On Thursday, we took a break from the normal routine of camp for Trip Day. Our day began early, with a 7am breakfast of grits, eggs, toast, and OJ. After fueling up, all of camp loaded up on buses to head to their respective destinations for the day. Trip Day provides a nice change of scenery for the boys and creates some of the coolest memories of the summer. It’s a great chance for cabinmates and their counselors to bond over a new experience or challenge.
Our Hunters and Trappers traveled to Chattanooga where they spent the day at Lake Winnepesaukah Amusement Park. The boys and their counselors enjoyed rides and rollercoasters, and even got some spending money to buy snacks in the park. Lake Winnie also offers a water park, which really came in handy as the afternoon heated up. After riding the last waterslide, they boarded the bus back to camp and enjoyed pizza and a movie in the gym.
The Scouts bus brought them to Pigeon Forge, TN, for a day at Dollywood. This park is a camper and counselor favorite due to its world class roller coasters, short lines, and delicious concession stands. If you’ve never been, the park is full of old fashioned general stores, diners, candle shops, and other historic attractions. There is even a bald eagle preserve the boys got to visit.
The Warriors arrived in Bryson City, NC, to raft the Nantahala river. Upon arrival, the Warriors reunited with the Chief 2’s, who had completed their 4 day hiking trip on the Appalachian Trail nearby. The Chief 2’s were excited to get in the particularly cold and refreshing waters of the Nantahala for a trip in Duckies (a type of inflatable kayak). The Warriors and Chief 2’s navigated the occasional rapid on a nearly 3 hour trek down river, stopping periodically to swim along the way. On the way home, the buses pulled over for a pit stop to have pizza at a local park. You’ll notice pizza on trip day is a bit of a tradition!
Braves and Chief 1’s took on the powerful Ocoee River in Benton, TN. They loaded into rafts with their counselors and a professional raft guide for a fun ride through the rapids and falls located on the river. The Ocoee hosted the 1996 Olympic kayaking and canoeing competitions, and sports beautiful terrain and scenery along its banks. After the voyage, the Braves and Chief 1’s headed over to McCallie School where they were invited to swim in their lake and play in the game room. For dinner- you guessed it- the boys ate pizza from Mr. T’s in Chattanooga.
Friday was a typical camp day, with the exception of a late wake up call so camp could get fully recharged from the big day. However, at lunch, something strange occurred. Camp was visited by a group of operations managers who began to explain to the boys about the “Supply Chain.” While I’m not certain this was a textbook explanation, the main point conveyed was that Alpine had a large supply of Uncrustable PB&J sandwiches, and the middle management of the Supply Chain was in demand!
Some campers began to boo the thieves, but others broke into applause because they knew that it meant that night, the campers would be tasked with getting back our Uncrustables in a game known as Mission Impossible. It’s likely our most popular night activity. Campers work as cabins to discreetly move throughout camp from station to station passing along passwords from Good Agents, while avoiding detection from Bad Agents seeking to spotlight them and send them back to the beginning. The boys enjoy dressing in camouflage and disguises to avoid detection. I even saw one dressed in an unconvincing, but humorous, chicken costume. In the end, Alahe, Mountain 1, and Ridge 2 were able to recover the Uncrustables and save the day.
Today we ran 3 morning activities with block period in the afternoon. Tonight the boys are set to play a round of Slaughterball plus a bonus night activity. As taps plays, week 2 of camp will have concluded, and only one full week will remain. We look forward to a peaceful Sunday at Alpine, and much more fun to come next week!
Thanks for reading, Wayne