Old School - My Family Travels


“Living off the land” is not a very common lifestyle in America today; however, at OLD School (outdoor, leadership, and discipleship school) it’s how you learn to live. Five days full of backpacking, whitewater rafting, canoeing, mountain biking, living in close to perfect community with your fellow believers- what more could you ask for?

Monday: We arrive! Anticipation is still thick in the air. Nobody knows what to expect. Will the people we meet be mature, nice, cool? Will I be able to hike 7 to 8 miles a day? How will I know how to set up a tent? All of these questions we asked ourselves as we stepped onto Snowbird Wilderness Outfitters campus once again. When we arrive most of our questions are answered by our leaders, who then taught us how and where to set up our tent and how we should pack our backpacks. After we accomplished that task, we took our last shower for a while and went to sleep in our freshly set up tents.

Tuesday: Our first day on the trail! Immediately after waking up, we pack up and head out. After about the first 30 minutes of hiking, everyone is pooped, so we stop and eat lunch. Plain-and-simple food like bagels and peanut butter never tasted so good. Following lunch, we keep going until we get to the top of the mountain where we stop and rest. A couple of miles up a steep mountain, the view is breathtaking, literally. We keep going until we see our campsite for the night, a flat spot on the side of a mountain. We unpack our stuff, fix dinner, build a fire, and just hang out. At sundown, we head to bed.

Wednesday: More hiking! We wake up, eat breakfast, and hike some more! Except this time, at about noon we get picked up by our friends at Snowbird and given some delicious McDonalds- the best I have had in my life. We are driven to a lake, where we then canoe to the peninsula-everyone’s favorite campsite. While there, we learn basics of canoeing like the “C Stroke,” and what to do if you capsize. Like before, when the sun goes down we head to our sleeping bags.

Thursday: The day of civilization. After waking up, we canoe back to the boat ramp and are driven to the river where we go whitewater rafting. We all get a chance to not only be a passenger but to guide the raft! Then, finally, we head to a real campsite with running water! We get our bikes and ride around the site a little bit, looking forward to the bike ride of tomorrow.

Friday: Our last full day. We get up and get ready for our last real activity at OLD school: mountain biking. There are two trails-a 4 mile and a 7 mile. Personally, I chose the 4 mile because I didn’t condition before OLD school like I should have. Finishing our bike ride, we move back to campus for some well-needed showers and to see some familiar faces. We end up camping on a trail off to the side of the main campus.

Saturday: Departure. The worst day of the whole trip, if that’s even possible. We wake up, go to service, and pack our things for the last time. We say our final goodbyes then go our separate ways.

So if my week sounds interesting to you, OLD school is the place for you. Check it out at

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