FMR FAQ

Click on each number in the red box to the left of the question to display the answer.
Scroll down to see all questions and answers.

The Fall Mountain Retreat (FMR) has been around for 30 Years! Fall Mountain Retreat's 2018 retreat marks the 30th Year!
A group of like minded individuals who felt that a retreat could help others in ACA Recovery.
Fall Mountain Retreat (FMR) is sponsored by the Orange County Adult Children of Alcoholics Intergroup. Also, the committee planners for each event are a different group of ACA'ers.
You will meet people from all walks of life at our camp. We have people who come from Los Angeles, San Diego, Orange County, and sometimes from neighboring states!
What better way to make a new friend! Ask someone if they have a spare, whatever. If you can't find what you want or need, then go to one of the camp organizers for help! Here is a list of things you should bring to camp to have a good time.
Here is a link to pictures of the buildings / cabins / rooms / bathroom. Each cabin has separate bunk rooms for women and men. The individual bunks do not come with sheets, blankets or pillows! You must bring your own or a sleeping bag. All cabin bathrooms are modern; with toilet, sink, private shower, and electrical outlets.
Here is a link to a picture of what the food looks like. Scroll to the bottom of the page. Its good, simple, camp food. Its stick to your ribs fare.
As of right now, Camp de Benneville Pines offers vegetarian meals & limited gluten free options.
Sorry to hear that! The good news is that we have a Registered Nurse on site! Find a camp organizer and they will take you to the nurse.
Click this link to take you to the archives section of FMR for a list of past documents.
Up in the mountains there is always the potential for fires! Pointing your car out will speed the process of an orderly evacuation from the camp. If there are fires going on in the area you will be notified by camp organizers as to the severity and any evacuation plans.
Yes and no. Its a good idea to bring snacks and water in your car. The drive from Los Angeles to Camp de Benneville Pines is about 100 Miles! But, you cannot leave your water and food/snacks in your car while at camp. There are animals called Bears who also like water, food, and snacks and will try to enter your car or truck to get to them. There is a refrigerator in the main lodge that you can put your water and snacks in. Also, you cannot have food in your cabin for the same reason, unless the cabin you are in has its own refrigerator.
YES! you will not be turned away for not having insurance. You will still have to fill out a release form though. Here is a link to the release form. Print it out, fill it out, and bring it camp when you check in. This will speed up your check in process!
Yes, you will need to fill out a liability release form. Here is the link to it. To speed up the process, print it out, and fill it out before coming to camp. It will vastly speed up your in-processing time!
Here is link to a CalTrans Page that gives a list of Live Traffic Cameras that give road condition images from 30 miles out from the camp to about 5 miles: Link. Scroll down the page to see the farthest live web camera.
Here is a link to a live web cam that is outside of The Oaks Restaurant: The Oaks Restaurant: Link.
The Oaks Restaurant Live Web Camera is about 3 miles from the camp itself. Please check the road conditions before you leave for camp! Some years ago, there was enough snow on the mountains to require snow chains!!! If you did not have snow chains you would have been told to turn back!
Camp de Benneville Pines Official Address: 41750 Jenks Lake Road West Angelus Oaks, CA 92305
Link to directions to the camp
GPS Coordinates to the front entrance of the camp are: 34.162294, -116.894291
CalTopo: http://tinyurl.com/kd5uqtj of the camp.
The map feature itself looks like a lasso (coming off of Jenks Lake Road West) with a blue box in the middle of it. That's the camp's pool.
Yes, here are some numbers that you can call: 310-555-5555 and 714-555-5555. Note: These are not real numbers. If this is your first time to camp, it is recommended that you leave early! There are no street lights in the mountains! When the sun goes down its pitch dark!
Yes we will do everything possible to accommodate your special needs. But, please call us or email us before the retreat begins so we can accommodate you early instead of at the last minute. It may be a good idea to bring fresh ear plugs for your fellow campers if accommodations can't be met.
We have people who ask for bottom bunks, this can be done, but EACH camper must request this to the camp nurse by email at fmrchair@gmail.com to ensure a bottom bunk will be reserved for them. This must be done prior to camp, at the door requests for a bottom bunk cannot be accommodated.
Camp de Benneville Pines - San Bernardino Mountains - sits at an elevation of 6,800 feet! So, it may take time for your body to adjust to the high altitude. If you walk 20 feet and experience shortness of breath, then just take your time! Be gentle with yourself and you will be fine.
Yes! This is an official ACA Retreat, however we have had people from other 12 Step Organizations come to our retreat for recovery. All are welcome!
Yes! It's true, we have people who have never missed a retreat once they discovered it! Ask around and you will get to meet them.
You will pass through the city of Redding, California on your way to camp. Check out Yelp Activities or Restaurant listings. Also, the last town, before you get to camp is called Angelus Oaks. There are a couple of restaurants in town that you can check out.
If you leave late you will hit traffic and arrive to camp late and or when its dark! There are no street lights up in the mountains! There are two best "window" drive times to leave for camp. The first window is between 9:30AM to 12:30PM. The assumption is that you are leaving on Friday.
Note: You cannot check-in to camp until 4:00PM on Friday! If you are making good time on the way to camp it would be wise to hang out in Redding and/or Mentone awhile!
The second window will be at 7:30PM. It will be at night, but the traffic will have died down by this time. When you turn from Route 38 to Jenks Road West, set your odometer to zero. At about 1.2 Miles you should see the Camp de Benneville Sign. Turn RIGHT, before the sign, to get on the dirt road to camp. If your odometer reads 1.5 or more then you missed the camp entrance. Turn around and re-trace your steps.
Usually, we have a masseuse on site that charges 60 dollars an hour and she is worth it! On Sunday we have raffle baskets! So, bring some extra one and fives to buy some tickets for the raffle! Every year we have amazing program themed baskets that you could win! (Note: have pictures of what the baskets look like).
Also there is a small gift type shop in Homet Lodge with "tchotchkes", as we like to call them, type stuff opened limited hours throughout the weekend.
YES! Hiking is only allowed with a guide as appointed by camp organizers. This is a department of forestry regulation and we must show our hiking permit to the camp director when we arrive. So no hiking anytime other than what is designated on the schedule and with the leader.
Ah yes, the eternal ACA Question. I'm afraid of people, but people are one of the cures to recovery. This is what one camper does to meet new people! During the meal times they go to a table with people they have not met before and they strike up conversations with those people at the table! We are all at the retreat for recovery, so there will be plenty to talk about. Talk about the food, the location, where the other campers came from, what workshops they liked, etc... Ask a question and sit back and listen to their answers and enjoy your meal. Another way to make new friends is to fill out a warm fuzzy. We have them every year set up on a table in Homet Lodge.
What we do is ask people who get a reduced rate (what FMR calls camperships) to help with various tasks during the weekend. They will be contacted by a specific committee member to be assigned to these tasks.
In Short, no. Yes, there is wireless at the camp, but it is only for camp employees. If you need WiFi access, we recommend that you go down the mountain to Mentone to use the Wifi at Mc'D's or Starbucks, they are the closest to the camp or use their own personal hotspot.
Yes, check where table lamp is plugged in and use the other outlet. Also, along the wall behind the lower bunk mattress you may find an outlet! You may have to pull the bunk away from the wall to find it. It maybe a good idea to bring an extension cord or power-strip to accommodate all of your electronic devices.
Where do we begin? There are workshops, Tai chi chih, Yoga, Meditation, journaling, hot-tubing, swimming, hiking, or you can just take a nap in your room. We also have a dance and various 12 step meetings. Its all up to you and your recovery.
Yes! We have documentation going back many years. Please click this link to take you to our archives section.
Here is a link to the camp's website: http://www.uucamp.org/ The camp has been around for 50 years. It is located in the San Bernardino Mountains, near Big Bear Lake. Its about 3 Miles past the town of Angelus Oaks. It is used as a camp for children, adults and corporate retreats. It is run by the Unitarian Church.
Yes! Here is a list of emails and phone numbers to call concerning your questions.
Well, bully for you! Welcome to Camp de Benneville Pines! First things first! Park your car facing out in the parking lot. Go to the Main Lodge Homet, to check in. Once you check in, drive slowly to your cabin, find your room, unpack, and then drive back to the parking lot and park your car facing out. Go back to the main lodge Homet to work on your name badge. Lastly, look at the activities calendar, in your welcome packet, and decide what you want to do! You can do everything or nothing its all up to you and your recovery.
From Los Angeles, if you leave before the traffic, it will take about 2 hours drive time to get to camp. The best times to leave for camp, if you live in Los Angeles, is between 9:30AM and 12:00PM. If you leave during this time window you will beat the traffic in LA and in San Bernardino. If you leave earlier or later than this window you will hit traffic and it will significantly add to your drive time!
Make sure your car has a full tank of gas, check your tire pressure and fluids before your drive. It would be a good idea to have AAA Card too. You will see some beautiful scenery and you will be driving up some steep mountain hills! Take your time driving and enjoy the journey. You may want to stop in Redding, to take a break, before driving up the mountain. If you don't want to drive alone, please check out the drive share link.
The closest pharmacy is in Redding. You will need to drive down the mountain to find it.
Its a camp show where people sing, dance, read poetry, tell jokes, etc... Anything that you can do that is entertaining or inspiring to other campers. See a camp coordinator on Friday or email them beforehand for more information.
Anywhere from 80 to 110 people will show up. Most come on Friday afternoon, but others will show up as late as Saturday morning.
Remember when you went to your first ACA Meeting? It took awhile to make connections with people didn't it? Mental health professionals say that it may take up to 3 years for people, who suffered traumatic abuse, to start to trust others. Everyone at camp has been emotionally abused or damaged in some way. Even though you have bared your heart to others, because of their past abuse, they still will have a hard time trusting. Don't take it personally. Make the best of your time at camp. Be yourself. Chances are excellent that the next year when you show up, people will remember you and welcome you with open arms. Yes, this has happened.
Thats a great question! Every year dining times will change slightly due to the various camp activities. Check your welcome packet for dining times. All meals will be served at Homet Lodge.
Smoking is permitted on the Homet Lodge Porch, the cabin porches, and the cemented areas.
  • A sleeping bag
  • A pillow
  • Their prescription and non-prescription medication
  • A towel
  • A hair dryer
Don't forget to bring these things! Check out this link for our packing list for camp!
A campership is intended to help people who otherwise cannot afford to attend the Fall Mountain Retreat (FMR). The price of a campership is half of the at the door price. First, a prospective camper must ask the chairperson for a campership. The number of camperships available are based on the proceeds from the previous year's raffle intake and the donations of campers to the campership fund. Because there are a limited number of camperships available they are granted on a first asked, first paid basis. Once the retreat's supply of camperships is depleted we ask prospective campers to ask their home meeting for financial assistance.
No! Fall Mountain Retreat has been sponsored by Orange County Intergroup for the past 30 years and will continue to operate autonomously. In early 2017 it was proposed by a member of the SoCal ACA Intergroup to "partner up" with the FMR in regards to hosting their retreat content on the SoCal ACA Website. An agreement was made and now FMR has a section on the SoCal ACA Website to call their own. It is FMR's hope that internet savvy new comers will find this information and use it to come to their retreat!
This camp is not very “campy”. Guests will be sleeping in cabins. They are nice, too! The cabins have a selection of bunk beds and king-sized bunk beds (Craigs Cabin). While you will not need to bring a tent, it is a good idea to bring bedding (pillows, sheets, and blankets) as they will not be provided. Some people like to bring sleeping bags instead of bedding.
Sorry, no. The camp director doesn't offer a day rate, it's a package deal for the whole weekend.