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DISCOVERY has water rescue training

October 13, 2010

Callie Stevens, Staff Writer

The DISCOVERY semester finished the Water Pursuits Management part of the semester with a five-day rafting trip. On the trip, we rafted the Nantahala, completed swift water rescue training on the Tuckasegee and rafted the Ocoee for two days.

We had paddled the Nantahala in canoes a week before, so we knew the river very well. This made paddling the rafts easier. It was still difficult, because it was many of our first times every handling a raft. As you can imagine a raft handles differently than a canoe, because it is so much bigger.  But we all had fun anyways.

Swift Water Rescue training was two days on the Tuckasegee. We learned a variety of different skills to help save someone in dangerous whitewater situations. It was very physically demanding, because we were in the water 98 percent of the time.

After we finished Swift Water Rescue training, we traveled to the Ocoee River. Some of the students and our instructor, Dr. Drew Cavin, were raft guides on the Ocoee this past summer; so they were chosen to guide our first trip. They would let different students guide the raft on certain parts of the river as the trip progressed. By the end of the trip, every student had guided at least one rapid.

The five-day trip was very physically and mentally demanding, but it was worth every minute. The experience I gained from the trip was immeasurable. We really bonded as a group through the trip, and I’m sure the rest of the semester will be filled with more bonding, more physical exertion and plenty of fun.

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