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Stevenson Villager

Students challenge wild waters

The director of campus recreation, Matt Grimm, and his assistant, Craig Leduc, will take 21 students on a whitewater rafting trip on Saturday, April 22.

Whitewater rafting is adventurous and fun. (Photo by Razvan Orendovici)

The trip is booked with a local company, River and Trail Outfitters, Inc., in Knoxville, Md. The group’s journey will begin in Harper’s Ferry, W.Va., and will travel down the Shenandoah River as it courses into the Potomac, a stunning 6.5-mile watercourse through the Blue Ridge Mountains.

The trip, usually about four hours long, is made up of Class I-III whitewater and includes some calmer water. The waters have “multiple riffles and ledges, and some challenging rapids such as ‘Bull Falls’ and ‘White Horse,” according to the company’s website. River & Trail Outfitters has been running rafting trips at Harpers Ferry for 43 years.

Leduc said that although he has never traveled at this location, he is confident that the trip will be safe and managed. He said, “I received a Wilderness First Responder Certification to help with risk management on these trips,” and added, in the future, the goal would be to set up trips rock climbing (indoor and outdoor), skiing/snowboarding and kayaking. Less expensive trips, such as hiking, are also on their agenda.

The office of campus recreation is fairly new to Stevenson, and even though there is not a separate physical facility, the directors wanted to start building different kinds of programs for the students. Their latest venture is an outdoor adventure program.

“We decided [on an outdoor adventure program] mainly because space on campus is limited, and since these programs take place off campus, we are not necessarily competing with other small groups,” said Leduc.

The rafting trip costs only $20 per student, and the directors of recreation will provide transportation. All participants should sign up with Leduc through campus email and must attend a mandatory pre-trip meeting on Thursday, April 13 at 8 p.m. in the School of Business room 403.

Leduc and Grimm will meet with other colleges to find out what types of trips, paperwork and waivers they use to make future ventures easier and more fulfilling. Leduc said that the office of campus recreation is working hard to start this program up and the directors are eager to plan more student trips.

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Students challenge wild waters