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New Perspectives - Dec, 1997 Issue #49

Wilderness Recovery Lodge
Port Townsend, Washington
Peter Boeschenstein, Director

Gray Wolf Ranch is a relatively new residential program for young men ages 14 to 25. It is designed as a relatively short term transition (three to four months) for graduates of a chemical dependancy treatment program, or young men who have at least 30 consecutive days of abstinence from chemical use. Located in a rural setting, the goal is to provide as natural, safe and supportive setting as possible for a structured progression toward a sober lifestyle. 

There is clinical supervision 24 hours a day, and they emphasize the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous. “The Wilderness of the Olympic Peninsula is central to the Gray Wolf experience. The natural environment plays an important part in the recovery process of every resident. Trained guides and clinicians lead 7 - 10 day wilderness treks....” There also are frequent day trips throughout the boy’s stay to capitalize on the surrounding wilderness. 

“The day begins with meditation, breakfast, and house chores. Upon returning to the Lodge after a day of school or work, each resident will meet with their counselor, help prepare dinner, or interact with peers. After dinner, a resident will participate in a 90-minute group therapy where they process blocks to recovery, treatment plan assignments, and daily challenges.”

The Ranch also has available specialized treatment for those with biomedical complications or a secondary psychiatric diagnosis such as depression. Psychological evaluations and medical examinations are required for those residents who have no recent treatment history. 

“Vocational and/or educational placement is emphasized and achieved through the discharge process, outpatient referral, and Gray Wolf Ranch staff follow up.”

Copyright © 1997, Woodbury Reports, Inc. (This article may be reproduced without prior approval if the copyright notice and proper publication and author attribution accompanies the copy.)

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