The Best Day Yet!

My Saturday morning started early.  I have been part of a tradition of camp directors that assist with Saturday morning breakfast, namely pancakes.  Those before me have all taken the charge and the torch has been passed on to me.  I made my way up to the kitchen bright and early.  We are actually quite fortunate to have two trained chefs on staff this year.  Nathan Noland is heading up the kitchen for his first year. He has worked in the kitchen in the past and has now taken the lead. Nate trained here in Asheville and went on to intern at Eseeola Lodge in Linville, North Carolina. We have enjoyed some excellent dishes this summer so far.  Our second person, a long time friend and past High Rocks kitchen manager, Bill Gryder has stepped in to help us out in the afternoons and weekends. Bill has worked all around the area, including many years at the Grove Park Inn in Asheville.  Now let’s get back to the story.  As I was saying.  I have taken the torch (or spatula) and continued the pancake duty…sort of…  

I walked in as Bill was finishing up the made from scratch buttermilk pancake mix, just as he was adding the four gallons of buttermilk into the mix.  I assisted a bit, but I soon realized my hand was better used to cook up the 30 sheet pans of thick-sliced bacon. So while I missed a flipped a little, I really just cooked a ton of bacon in the oven and assisted some of the new staff still getting their footing around the kitchen.  We made way more cakes than we needed, but I would rather have too many than not enough.  Pancakes, bacon, hashbrowns, cereal, and fresh fruit.  It certainly was a great way to start the day!

Activities were filled with interesting twists and turns today!  All of them helped advance their skills, but also added a bit of fun.The hikers were enjoying some great opportunities to play a stalking game in the woods.  It’s really a sort of hid and seek, but the pictures came out really cool in the late morning shots.  Check them out.

The hikers were enjoying some great opportunities to play a stalking game in the woods.  It’s really a sort of hide and seek, but the pictures came out really cool in the late morning shots.  Check them out.

The equestrian crew enjoyed games on horseback. It really sounded like a smart move to me, when I saw how they used the doughnut game to practice emergency dismounts and horse control.  I boy can get off a horse pretty quick when it comes to doughnuts.  It really made for good pictures.

The mountain bikers were working on a series of agility skills that helped them with braking, maneuvering, and control.  Again, there are a few great shots to show you the details.

Canoes did their usual warm-ups but then moved to the middle fo the lake to practice deep water safety skills like the boat over boat rescue and swimming with a swamped boat.  Again, the cool part is the boys really enjoy tipping over and working through these events in the safety f our lake.

I guess it was boat tipping day on the lake, because the sailors were also using the calm day to practice capsize drills.  Of course, they were a little nervous at first, but then you could not get them to stop.  “Can we capsize again?”  “Jeff! Tip us over again?” What a great adventure!

The morning crafts crew were finishing up their woodworking projects.  They still have one more day on Monday and then the afternoon crew will begin their projects.  The afternoon guys did their High Rocks tie dyes today!  My favorite part is watching Jeb talk about proper color mixing and avoiding the dreaded browns, commonly known around camp as the “Poo Effect.”  There are a few color combinations that you want to avoid.  It takes the bright wonderfulness out of your shirt and, as you might imagine, turns it brown.  Of course, you had them at poo ;)… I love boys camp…

Just a heads. Some of you have figured out that the pictures go up throughout the day.  Just remember to check back in at post time to be sure you have seen all of the pictures from today.  Our mountain internet makes it a bit of a challenge to put up high-resolution images, so we do it in smaller batches throughout the day. It usually takes a few hours to get them all up. Anyhow, enjoy a little break in your day.  We usually have some up after rest hour (3pm) and then finalized once the blog is posted.

I am running out of time here and I am a little tired from my early morning adventures. There are over 300 pictures tonight.  Enjoy the show! I hope you had half as much fun as we had today.  Time for a little slowdown. Sunday is just like that!

Have a wonderful evening.

Don Gentle

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