A Fond Farewell
October 6, 2016 by Will Johnson
We certainly couldn’t have asked for a better closing day. By now, I imagine you’ve heard plenty of Carolina blue skies and the resplendent forest, so I’ll spare you much of the gooey weather and leaf talk. Suffice it to say that camp has only become more beautiful each day Altamont has been here. Though the students have one more night to enjoy here in the NC Mountains, they have met all the challenges of the program with enthusiasm and style; by the time you read this post they will be trundling to cabins from campfire under the best showing of the Milky Way since this time last year.
As I look back on the week, it is hard to believe how much the students have accomplished in such a short time. Though each group had its own order of events all week, by now everyone has tested the high ropes and zip line, climbed on the tower, paddled on the lake and on the French Broad river, found waterfalls and river critters in DuPont, and even meandered all over our beautiful 1000 acres of property while brushing up on orienteering skills. How fast the week has gone by is a testament to how much fun we’ve had this whole time.
One thing that consistently amazed me all week long was the collective attitude of these seventh graders. When groups come engaged and enthusiastic our job is a pleasure. This week with the Altamont school, I’ll comfortably say, was a joy. Among peers, students exude an air of inclusiveness and fun. When students interact with the staff they are inquisitive and engaged, yet polite. All of our staff would like to thank YOU, parents and faculty, for sending them here for an incredible experience! The activities they have done have certainly not been easy, but the maturity and diligence with which they have approached everything is impressive.
But all good things must eventually end, and so it is with Altamont’s 2016 experience at High Rocks. For nearly 60 years we have found great pride in bringing young people closer to the outdoors, each other, and themselves, and feel especially validated in our mission after a week such as this! Tomorrow the students will wake up, pack up, clean up, eat breakfast, and board the bus for home. We hope that when they return to you they are enthusiastic, full of tall tales, if not exhausted from fun overload.
That’s all for now, folks! Take care, and we are already looking forward to seeing Altamont again in 2017!