Magical miles

Hiking the Appalachian Trail in Tennessee. Backpacking in Colorado. Whitewater rafting in West Virginia.

These were excursions organized for Wright State University students by Campus Recreation over the summer.

“These are the kind of exciting experiences happening in our world,” said Erin Sherrets, program manager for the Outdoor Recreation Center.

From July 31 to Aug. 8, students explored mountains in Colorado’s San Juan Wilderness, backpacking 24 miles over the beautiful and challenging landscape. The group had to climb 4,000 feet in the first eight miles, but once above the tree-line were treated to sweeping views and magnificent vistas.

From Aug. 11 to 18, a group of freshmen and sophomores took the Freshman Outdoor Orientation Trip (FOOT), backpacking along the Appalachian Trail in Tennessee under the guidance of juniors and seniors.

“It was way above my expectations,” said Brandon Blair, a sophomore majoring in mechanical engineering. “It was a way cooler experience than I ever imagined.”

Participants hiked Roan Mountain, camped under the stars, cooked outdoors, played games, swam in waterfalls and maintained and repaired hiking trails in the area

From Sept. 4-6, a third group of students went whitewater rafting on the New River in West Virginia, negotiating rapids and drops. They also explored trails and camped under the stars.

The Outdoor Recreation Center has also reopened a five-story outdoor climbing and rappelling tower on the Dayton Campus through a partnership with Army ROTC. It is part of the Wright State Challenge Course that includes the low ropes course.

The challenge course is designed to offer experiential learning opportunities for groups and individuals. By working through the challenges, success or failure can be transferred to real-life experiences at school, work, home and with friends.

Campus Recreation provides quality recreational opportunities for the Wright State community to stay in shape, relieve stress and make new friends. It operates the Fitness Center, swimming pool, indoor and outdoor climbing walls, a gym, exercise studios, racquetball courts and outdoor fields.

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