Review of Base Camp Adventures: Volume 1 & 2 from Life Action Ministries

Produced by Life Action Ministries,  Base Camp Adventures is the story of the adventures experienced and lessons learned by the kids at a C...

Produced by Life Action Ministries, Base Camp Adventures is the story of the adventures experienced and lessons learned by the kids at a Christian mountain climbing camp. It all takes place on the majestic Mount Eternity.

Several kids including, Piper, Albert, Molly, Terrence, and others learn from Mountain Man Jack, his brother Mountain Man Joe, and Ranger Sue. 

In this post, I'll be reviewing the first two volumes of the series. Volume 1: The Climb of Your Life came out in 2016. Volume 2: In Time of Need came out in 2017.

Volume 1

This entertaining and fun audio drama series is based on our beloved Base Camp curriculum, Base Camp Adventures, and it invites children into the exciting world of Mountain Man Jack and his base campers. As they brave the slopes of Mt. Eternity, they hear new parables and learn about the life-changing principles of revival from God’s Word.

Episodes include:
  • Learning to Climb
  • Sin, the Camel
  • The Good Prince, Parts 1 & 2
  • Marcus's Journey, Parts 1 & 2

Volume 1 introduces us to Base Camp through the eyes of new camper, 12-year-old Piper McLoren. 

The first episode, Learning to Climbis a fairly simple story where Piper learns the importance of
obeying rules and hears more about God.

The next episode is called Sin, the Camel. The first campfire story is told in this one. It has a
good message about not allowing sin into our life, even just a little. The only downside in this episode
is that one of the characters in the story has a pretty annoying voice. That may have been intentional
because the character is not meant to be a moral figure.

The Good Prince is probably one of the best fictional stories I've heard to tell about salvation and Jesus' sacrifice for us. It definitely stands out as one of the best episodes of BCA. It’s also a great tribute to the spiritual impact that church camps can have on kids.

Marcus’s Journey is probably the weakest story from this series. The acting and the writing seemed a bit below the other episodes that I've heard from BCA. With both parts being under 17 minutes, it certainly seems that this could have easily been just a single episode. My guess is that it wasn't done that way so there would be an even number of episodes in this album. The addition of the character of Albert, a brainy adolescent, adds some nice comic relief to these episodes and others in the next album.

My favorites from this album were The Good Prince and Sin, The Camel.

Volume 2

Mountain Man Jack and his Base Campers are back, in an exciting new audio drama album from Life Action Ministries! Hold on to your seat, as the campers face new and sometimes dangerous adventures, learning new lessons about obedience, God’s Word, prayer, and an attitude of relying on God daily.

Episodes include:
  • Titu
  • The Lost Cabin
  • Regina's Torch
  • Leaning
  • Prayers from the Cave
  • Girls' Night In

While the first volume is mostly focused on the campfire stories, Volume 2 is more balanced with less of those and more focus on the kids having their own adventures at Base Camp. Ranger Sue is introduced and joins Mountain Man Jack and Mountain Man Joe as a counsellor to the campers.

Titu was the first episode of BCA I ever heard and is also one of my favorites. This was also the first campfire story that had all animals in it. The main character, a monkey named Titu, learns the importance of obedience. Justin Green does a great job playing the voice of Titu and really delivers on the emotional ending.

Regina's Torch is another great campfire story. It is a bit more of a fantastical tale than some of the others but is still quite interesting and enlightening (no pun intended). 

Leaning is another good episode with just the adventures of the campers and no campfire story. It also
gives us a peek at the family life of the mountain men brothers.

Most of the story-within-stories are fictional ones. However, hearing a real-life story in Prayer from the Cave was a nice change of pace.

Girl’s Night In is possibly the most fun episode of BCA. While listening to this, I thought of the Adventures in Odyssey episode The Champ of the Camp and the prank war. There's some great humor in this story. Along the way, both the girls in the cabins and the boys camping at Base Camp learn to be doers of God's Word.

The Series Overall

I couldn't find what the target age is for the series, but I would guess that it would be around the same as Adventures in Odyssey: 8-12 years old. There is some mild peril in a few episodes that may frighten children younger than that age range, but that's about it. All of the episodes have strong Christian messages that are put in a way that kids can understand. I would compare it to Paws and Tales in that respect.

The writing of the episodes rarely has any hiccups. Most of the dialogue is well-written and when the right actors perform them, it is a joy to listen to.

The acting for the show ranges from average to excellent. Some of the standout performances in the series is Anna Nelson who plays Piper. Besides Mountain Man Jack, she has the most lines of anyone. Speaking of Jack, Matthew Fredericks does a great job playing the main authority figure with the right amount of humor and heart.

There are few times when some actors don't quite sell the performance. However, it didn't distract me much from the stories. The host of the show, Megan, isn't all that enthusiastic or engaging. Not everyone can be Chris from AIO, but a little more energy in the delivery of the lines would have been nice.

The sound design is quite good. I can't remember a time when I thought there was more sound effects that should have been added. The show does not have a real large soundscape and some of the sound effects do sound canned. However, neither of those issues are major enough to detract from the stories. The music fits well with the dialogue and action. The theme music is pretty catchy, too.

Even with this show not being made by big name professionals, I was surprised by how great this series was. I have to say that I am really enjoying this series. I'm looking forward to hearing future episodes of Base Camp Adventures! I would highly recommend this series to anyone who loves well-made audio drama, exciting stories, and great Biblical teaching.

Purchase Volume 1: The Climb of Your Life

Listen free to Volume 1: The Climb of Your Life in the BCA podcast

Purchase Volume 2: In Time of Need

Listen free to Volume 2: In Time of Need in the BCA podcast

Check out the Base Camp Homepage for CDs, a singalong album, stickers, coloring books, comic books, and more.

Austin Peachey is a die-hard reader and audio drama fan. He's run the Adventures in Odyssey Blog for over 12 years and has produced a few audio dramas of his own. He's also worked on the 2nd edition of The Official Guide to Odyssey and can be heard on Iliad House.


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