Where do 123 students from 10 Maine high schools and Teens to Trails staff find themselves on a weekend in May? At Adventure Bound in Caratunk, Maine of course!
Spring Thing Weekend at Adventure Bound
Outing Clubs from across Maine joined together at Adventure Bound May 17-19th for a weekend of whitewater rafting, ropes course, hiking, canoeing, stand up paddleboarding (or SUPing), and bonding, thanks to the coordinated efforts of our friends at Teens to Trails. Every spring, T3 invites Maine outing clubs to sign up and join some or all of the festivities, located right here at Adventure Bound. It’s a weekend of outdoor adventuring, making new friends, and recognizing the amazing efforts of our school’s outing clubs!
Leading up to 2019 #springthing weekend, things looked a little gloomy. It’s been a rainy and cold spring, making it hard to motivate for outdoor explroation- even for the real adventurous! But that didn’t stop these clubs— slowly but surely, between Friday night and Saturday morning, over 120 students and staff from outing clubs around Maine arrived at Adventure Bound.
Day One- Saturday:
Some clubs arrived and set up camp Friday night, others arrived Saturday morning. Everyone was here by noon, when the T3 staff gathered everyone together to welcome all of the Maine outing clubs and students to the 2019 Spring Thing Weekend! And then the adventures began….
For Saturday afternoon, clubs get to choose from a variety of activities led by our Adventure Bound staff, including:
Photo by Teens to Trails, 2018
Canoeing & Kayaking…
Photo by @simplyyy.chayse
Photo by Teens to Trails, 2017
After a FULL afternoon of activities, clubs come back to the adventure center to relax…or not! Adventure Bound’s base has a LOT of things to do, including a pool, hot tub, indoor climbing wall, disc golf course, basketball court, soccer field, volleyball court…just to name a few. Saturday evening was filled with students hanging out around the base, filling it with chatter, laughter, and fun!
That night, outing clubs prep and cook their own dinners over campfires, camp stoves, and grills in the Adventure Bound field…
Photo by Teens to Trails, Spring Thing 2018
Day Two- Sunday:
Sunday, students were up bright and early to make breakfast over the camp stoves before whitewater rafting on the Kennebec River! Clubs met with the Adventure Bound staff, who are all state of Maine licensed Whitewater Rafting Guides. After a brief orientation with our trip leader, students got geared up with wetsuits, which are necessary on these early season trips. Someone once said, “there’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing” and that definitely pertains to whitewater rafting! You’re going to get wet anyway, so better dress for the occasion! After getting wetsuits, all rafters joined together to listen to the safety lecture put on by our river manager, Adam. The whitewater rafting safety lecture is a required piece of any trip, ensuring all rafters are well informed before venturing out into the wilderness. By 9:00am, rafters are geared up with lifejacket, paddle, and a helmet and are headed to the river!
Safety Orientation, photo by Teens to Trails
Whitewater rafting on the Kennebec River is a BLAST, complete with rollercoaster waves, big splashes, swim spots, and incredible scenery. For a complete recap of the day, here’s a video put together by our video boater/staff member, Matt:
The 12 mile adventure through the Kennebec River gorge and lower river ends in the West Forks, where the Kennebec and Dead Rivers come together. With a 5 minute bus ride back to our base, the students quickly change into warm, dry clothes and get ready for a delicious BBQ lunch, with choice of teriyaki chicken, steak, haddock, or veggie burger!
All good things must come to an end….and so, post rafting trip, the clubs and Teens to Trail staff trickled away, heading home before the work/school week begins. We’re left feeling incredibly grateful to be a part of such a fun, memorable, and rewarding weekend.
Many, many thanks to Teens to Trails for your efforts in coordinating this event, and for choosing Adventure Bound as your base and host for the Spring Thing weekend. We are so stoked to work with T3, as well as the awesome teachers and students from Maine outing clubs. We look forward to many more adventures with Maine outing clubs in our future!
The Whole Crew from 2019! Photo by Teens to Trails
We hope you and your outing club join us for next year’s Spring Thing! Stay tuned for information on how to sign up, and visit Teens to Trails online to learn more about the awesome organization supporting teens involvement in the outdoors!