868 in Action
(April 3~6, 2011)
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Each year during school spring break, Troop 868 tries to conduct some sort of multi-day activity. The boys' choice for this year was to go whitewater rafting on Section IV of the Chattooga River. That particular river was the setting for the movie "Deliverance" and, being a natural flowing river (versus a controlled-release river), is an excellent choice to run mid-week. We decided to raft on a Monday when the crowd would be smaller and the cost a bit less expensive.
This meant a Sunday afternoon departure and a long drive from Shepherdsville to Camp Rainey Mountain in northeast Georgia. The camp is only a few miles from the river and was the obvious place to spend several nights. Unfortunately, the camp is difficult to find and GPS directions were inaccurate. We had expected to arrive around 11 PM, but after a longer than planned stop for dinner en route then having problems finding the camp, it was nearly 2 AM before we finally arrived at our campsite. It was fortunate Mr. Meek had been there before and was able to lead us to our campsite without having to wake the camp ranger in the middle of the night.
We had checked out several outfitters and decided to go with Wildwater, Ltd. We had used them when we rafted the Chattooga back in 2001 and been very pleased. We were not disappointed this time, either. They did a fantastic job for us. We had 16 participants in our group, so they divided us among three different rafts. All three guides were excellent. The water level on the river was very high ... another inch or two and it would have been too dangerous to make the trip, so we loved it! The water was fast and the only portage we had to do was carrying the rafts from the bus to the put-in point just a few hundred feet from the parking lot ... easy.
|(L to R, back row)
ASM Tom Jacobs, Kraig, Gabe, Dylan, Connor, Nick, ASM Mike Canchola, and
ASM Jeff Hagerman.
(L to R, front row) Toby, Nicholas, Preston, Adam, Brixton, Spencer, and Scoutmaster Bob Meek.
|The main building and check-in station at Wildwater, Ltd.||The first raft has a successful launch into relatively calm water.|
|The crew of raft #2 prepares to push off.||These guys look all calm and relaxed ... ready for a nice gentle float ... sort of like a log ride at an amusement park.|
|See, fellas, this isn't so bad.||Now we're talking!|
|Ouch! This guy doesn't drive any better than Mr. Meek!||Yeeee-Haa!|
|Sometimes, one doesn't even have to leave the raft in order to take a swim! (Look close --- there are 7 people in that raft.)||The people in front sometimes get wet, too!|