Session 2 Day 15

By Sandy Schenck

Our Session 2 campers returned safely from their camp-outs today, but only after going on an exciting tubing trip down the French Broad River. Campers had wonderful experiences on the camp-outs. Le Camp-Out Internationale reports that they ate haute cuisine, including brie, apples, and French bread on their first day out and an excellent stir-fry for dinner one night. They had fun playing games and even made up one; they are calling it International Tag. The Wild Foods and Primitive Skills camp-out spent time learning how to build primitive shelters, and they also built a two-person-seat swing! They cooked a five-course meal for dinner one night; every course included at least one ingredient collected from their environs. They also feasted on tons of wild blueberries. The Storytelling, Stalking, and Tracking hike told some traditional stories and then they enjoyed learning more about each other as they shared some personal stories. They also saw a deer and a rattlesnake. Campers on the Pirate Hike quested for treasure, enjoyed the hikes, and talked a lot like pirates….arghhhhh! Our Astronomists hiked to the Upper Bald and set up camp; later that night, they night-hiked down to the Lower Bald, where they stargazed for a while. Since it was a cloudy night, however, they headed back to the Upper Bald, and by the time they got back there, the clouds had dissipated, so they kept stargazing. After sleeping in the next day, they hiked down to Hemlock Field, where they set up camp and did some more stargazing that night, using star charts to find constellations. They slept under the stars in Hemlock Field. The campers on the Appalachian Trail/Ultra-lite hike knocked out around 33 miles total over the days they were out!! They hiked to Jones Gap (where they were excited about using real bathrooms) and Rainbow Falls, in South Carolina; then they returned to the Preserve and hit the Trout Pond and Peggy’s Rock; then they hit DuPont State Forest and Wintergreen Falls. That is some hard-core hiking, and they were really proud of what they had accomplished when they returned. And we are proud of them, too!

We picked campers up around 10 this morning and took them over to the French Broad River. After eating a picnic lunch (and applying plenty of sunscreen), they had fun in the water for a couple of hours; then we stopped for ice cream on our way back to camp. Tonight, everyone relaxed while watching a movie. Tomorrow, they are headed off to DuPont State Forest for another fun day of hiking and picnics, and we will welcome our Mini Session campers. Our Session 2 campers are looking forward to helping teach our younger campers all about GRP traditions and values. We know they will be great role models!