Bruin Woods was founded in 1985 to serve as a fun retreat where UCLA Alumni could reconnect with their alma mater and introduce their families to our beloved traditions. We’ve gathered every summer since then at the UCLA Lake Arrowhead Conference Center property, nestled on 50 wooded acres on the north shore of beautiful Lake Arrowhead in the San Bernardino Mountains.
The Bruin Woods Family Camp program runs for 10 consecutive weeks each summer, with up to 80 families attending each week. The Conference Center employs year-round staff for its operational departments, including Housekeeping, Dining, Front Desk and Maintenance to make sure that our historic property always shines in its best light.
In addition, 54 eager and well-qualified UCLA students join us seasonally to help run the Bruin Woods Family Camp program. These carefully selected student staffers fulfill roles as varied as boat drivers and lifeguards, age group counselors, outdoor adventure rovers, arts and crafts instructors and more.
Bruin Woods has maintained its reputation as the top alumni family camp in the country through an on-going commitment to superb hospitality and service. We aim to create an environment for families to bond and grow, where kids can be kids and parents get to join in all the fun, too.
The resort is surrounded by towering pine trees and majestic oaks that grow down to the water’s edge of 780-acre Lake Arrowhead.
Wildlife in our area includes deer, the California black bear, grey squirrels, lynx, raccoons, bobcats, and 59 species of birds.
Lake Arrowhead’s official elevation is 5,174 feet. The highest point is a rock just under one mile in height.
During the fall, winter and spring seasons, Bruin Woods transforms into the UCLA Lake Arrowhead Conference Center. Serving groups throughout the year helps to ensure that the property remains a revenue positive source for the campus.
UCLA Faculty and their families were actually the first-ever Bruin Woods guests, visiting the new facility during the conference season to help ensure that accommodations and activities would be a success. These happy test subjects appeared in Bruin Woods’ earliest marketing materials.
Our first student staffers also tackled all the on-property jobs: They were camp counselors, dining staff, groundskeepers, housekeepers, and lodge keepers. In fact, they even constructed our amphitheater! Today, being a Bruin Woods counselor is one of the most competitive student jobs on campus.
At the end of each summer, student counselors update and revise their training manuals to ensure that the next season’s staff is as well-informed as possible.
Our stimulating Faculty Lecture Program has been in place since the very first year of operation, giving Alumni a chance to recapture that academic feeling.