06/19/2010 – 06/20/2010
June 19-20, 2010 was Father’s Day weekend and the scouts of Troop 28 travelled Caratunk, Maine for our annual whitewater rafting adventure. The fathers who attended were Mr. Butler, Mr. Jackisch, Mr. Haber, Mr. Ackley and Mr. O’Brien. We were excited to have Graham and Paul, our 2009 Eagle Scouts and Cohasset HS graduates as well as Tucker, our 2010 Eagle, help lead the scouts: Adam and Derek B., Reagan, Levente, John C., Dylan, Jack and Luke O, Sam G, Nick R, Morgan, Evan, and Brodie.
Our whitewater trip was put together by an organization named “Adventure Bound” way up in Caratunk, Maine, which is northwest of Skowhegan and not very far from the Canada border. Our drivers left Cohasset around 6:30 am on Saturday and we arrived at Caratunk around 11:30am in time to check in, have lunch and get started with the planned activities.
As soon as we arrived, we started playing Frisbee, while the staff set out our lunch buffet. After having lunch of sandwiches, potato chips and lemonade, we began an activity called “the ropes course” which is a challenging activity that ranges from high elements to low elements in terms of their difficulty and elevation. (See pictures in the Photo Gallery). You can’t believe how difficult it is to “walk the line” which is a skill you might need someday to cross a river or stream.
After the ropes course, we were free to relax, so some us went swimming in a pool they have at the campsite and others went to the climbing wall. We kept busy until we gathered for a pizza dinner. The scouts all stayed in two tent bunk houses and the adults stayed in two other smaller house tents provided by Adventure Bound. We all brought our sleeping bags to put on the bunks.
Sunday morning, we rose early, put on our swimsuits, and ate breakfast so we could go rafting at 8:30 am. Our whitewater rafting destination was the Kennebec River, which was about 45 minutes away. We then loaded onto the buses and drove to the dam which releases water before we go. Each raft had a professional registered Maine guide who gave us a history of the river and helped with steering.
We started at Harris Station, where the Kennebec winds through 12 miles of remote, wilderness where logging took place many years ago. Some of the rapids we went through were named: Rock Garden, Big Mama, Whitewasher, and Magic Falls. Magic Falls was the most fun for me because of the 13 foot drop off. But Big Mama and her three sisters, which is a series of four huge drops and waves that guarantee soaking everyone in the boat was pretty exciting as well. Once we were on the lower river, we had water fights and some of us got out of the rafts (we all had lifejackets!) floated alongside the rafts down the river. During the remainder of the trip down the river, we spotted a bald eagle which had a 6-foot wing span, and we played on duckies which are inflatable 2 person kayaks.
Because the weather was great, our lunch was a riverside cookout of teriyaki chicken, steak, salmon steak, or veggie burger that was served with homemade pasta salad and cookies, hot chocolate, and lemonade. In past years we went back to the campsite to eat, but the riverside cookout is really the best! After eating we got back into our rafts and went further down the river. When we arrived at the end of our trip, we put all of the gear on a truck and we loaded ourselves back onto our bus to be brought back to the main campsite.
Back at the Main Lodge, we saw a slide show presentation of our adventure, relaxed, drank more lemonade, played chess, some of us even fell asleep! The rest of the trip was just a long car ride home with dinner along the way. Most of us arrived home between 8 and 9 pm Sunday night. Thanks to all of the fathers who shared their special day with Troop 28 scouts.
Adam Benson, Historian