The Western Diocese Armenian Church Summer Camp Program began in 1964 with 32 participants. Originally called the Summer Religious Study Conference, it ran from July 27 – August 8, 1964 at Dinky Creek in the Sierra Mountains. A unique bond was formed and this little group, and the experiences they shared, became the mustard seed from which the current camp program developed.

The following year (and almost every subsequent year until 1988), the camp program took place at Camp Sugar Pine in the Sierra Mountains. In December 1987, the Western Diocese became the proud owner of the Alta Sierra Camp (formerly Bob Mathias Camp), nestled in the Sequoia National Forest of the San Joaquin Valley.

Dedicated in 2013 as Archbishop Vatche Hovsepian Camp is a 160-acre property located in Dunlap, California about 35 miles east of Fresno. It is within five miles of the entrance to Kings Canyon and the Sequoia National Park at an elevation of 4,400 feet. The property offers a unique, serene retreat setting, perfect for reflection and fellowship.

Currently, the Western Diocese of the Armenian Church hosts 4 weeks of summer camp aka HYE CAMP. During the remainder of the year, the facility is used by various diocesan organizations for meetings, retreats and conferences. The camp is also available to rent by outside groups throughout the year, and interested parties should contact the camp through our Contact Us page.