Saturday, June 6, 2015

Canoe Trip Reflection

This years canoe trip was yet again an amazing experience while being apart of the Outdoor Ed prgram. Algonquin park was definitely my favourite trip of all for many reasons. To start off we were given amazing weather for most of the trip , which made our visit to high falls perfect swimming weather. Secondly, the group meals were delicious. My favourite part overall is being able to bond with my classmates and get to know one another. Despite the mosquitoes that become horrendous at times, or our wavy paddle at the beginning of the trip, I think I can speak for the whole class when I say we all came back to school with amazing memories made. To begin, the weather we were given on our Algonquin Park canoe trip was perfect. Although at the beginning of the trip I assumed it to be cold weather for the full four days, the sun came out instead, making it a beautiful day for canoeing. For example, I was very glad we went to high falls the second day as it was probably the warmest. It wasn’t always that warmthough considering the last day it snowed! It was definitely the coldest day on our fourth day but we didn’t have to canoe very which I was thankful for. Certain nights and mornings it stayed quite cold as well, which was okay because I knew if it was any hotter the mosquitoes would become even worse. In addition, the food was excellent. On the grade 10 hiking trip last year, we cooked our meals with our tenting groups. Our meals didn’t taste very good and took forever to cook. This year’s meals were certainly different as we all worked together in our cooking groups and as a class to make our meals. This went much quicker than last year, and we also had a large variety of food choices. It was great being able to cook with our meals and eat together as a class as we all got to know each other better. Furthermore, this trip brought everyone to becoming closer friends . This is one of my favourite aspects about being in the outdoor ed program because you get to bond with everyone and create amazing memories. From simply sitting by the campfire getting to know each other, or helping eachother out during the portages, this trip is where I became closer friends with most of the group. There were only a couple things that weren't as fun about the trip. As we first got on the water on day 1, the wind and waves were crazy. We would have large amounts of water splashing in our boat and it was really hard to paddle. At the beginning, I was worrying that our whole trip would be that way. Luckily, we pulled into land and did a quick portage across to a much calmer side. We rafted up once we got on windy water again and started sailing which was cool. The mosquitos were the most annoying aspect. For the most part, they were bearable, but at certain times such as one of the portages, or going over to get firewood were the worst! The bugs would be so in the way that poison ivy wasn’t even a concern anymore. I would walk right through it just to get out of the bugs and get on the water as soon as possible. Thankfully, I never ended up with poison ivy. As for things I could have done better, bringing a warmer sleeping bag would have made my sleep at night much nicer at as sometimes I would wake up freezing! Overall, I’m so glad to have partaken in the Algonquin Park canoe trip as it has been one of my life’s favourite trips. I’ve learned a lot about working together and collaborating with people while being able to appreciate the beauty of the outdoors. I’m very thankful for the great weather we had and an amazing class and teachers to have spent this trip with. Watching Nick’s video the other day reminded me of how much I miss it already and would go back anyday. It also reminded me of how sad it makes me that I don’t have outdoor ed in my timetable next year and won’t have another high school experience like our last canoe trip. Though, I will make sure to continue staying active in the outdoors even if I can’t through Outdoor Ed! Thankyou Mr. Brouwer for teaching me many life lessons and also creating and planning amazing trips for our class!

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