A Blue Ribbon Camp Day!

A summer camp girl holds recently caught trout.
Our Trips Hiking girls were treated to fly-fishing instruction on the Davidson river. Apparently, they had a good instructor!

The temperature was a lot cooler today, and we were back to the lower humidity that mountain weather usually brings. There was a collective sigh of relief from the (gasp!) two days of heat and high humidity that we’ve had. Sorry, flatlanders…I know it’s still hot there. We are settling into camp again with our Mini 2 girls finding their way to all their activities, learning the ropes and becoming indoctrinated as “Illahee girls.” A word of caution reserved just for you new parents and I can almost see the 4 week moms nodding out there. You may receive a “911” letter today or tomorrow that was written in the first few hours after arrival Sunday. Don’t despair! It has almost certainly resolved itself or we would have been in touch by now. As always, we are here for you, so don’t hesitate to drop Laurie an email @campillahee.com (first name).

Our camp fleet has been moving down the roads of western North Carolina the last couple of days. A group went back over to the nearby Davidson river today to the Pisgah Wildlife Center to do some stream exploration and fishing. All of our Trips Training kayakers got out on a river with Jim to the French Broad to practice the skills they have been learning on the lake. Our climbers took resident photographer Mary Lou  with them on their trip today. They were planning on going to Cedar Rock and were turned back by a fallen branch across the road, and went to the South Side of Looking Glass instead. Soup took some special hikes out both this morning and afternoon.

Trips Kayaking had a grand day on the Nantahala River today. The “Nanty” is one of the best teaching rivers in the Southeast, and I spearheaded an effort this past winter to secure permits for twelve member camps of the North Carolina Youth Camp Association. Camps were the first users of the river starting in the 1950′s, but were left out in favor of larger raft outfitters in recent decades. Water is always constant if a bit cold, and it offers the perfect mix of class 3 rapids and easy access.

We got a ten minute cool-off without much thunder drama at the end of rest hour…enough to wet the ground, but not enough to interrupt the flow of activities. Lunch was a favorite…chicken tenders, (think Chick-Fil-A, not McDonalds), corn, salad, with honey mustard and ranch dipping sauces. Dinner on Wednesdays is an opportunity for the kitchen staff to take a break with a picnic “bag supper.” Not sure why it is called Bag Supper, since there are no bags involved, just turkey, ham, PB&J, chips, homemade cookies, pasta salad…all enjoyed with cabinmates by the lake. James Taylor’s crooning tunes are also part of this tradition.

It was a great day in our Heavenly World.

3 responses to “A Blue Ribbon Camp Day!

  1. My mother and I are sitting here reading the blog (crying too…but happy tears) and catching up on all things Illahee. As the mother of THREE girls, it is a big relief to know that Illahee will be part of the “Village” raising our children. After Alex’s first year last year, I could already tell what an incredible part of her life Illahee would become. A big thank you for exposing the campers to so many different things, for believing in each individual and for helping the children to know God and grow in their relationship with Him. You and your staff play a significant role in shaping all of the Illahee Girls into “GREAT GIRLS”. Bravo!


  2. “Bag supper” comes from earlier days where the kitchen staff took Thursday nights off. The CIT’s would put out premade sandwiches in a serving line, and campers would go through the line to get one of each thing (a sandwich, a piece of fruit, a cookie, some potato chips, a candy bar) and it would all go into a brown paper lunch bag. It was also “cabin night” evening program so each cabin would go somewhere on camp property and eat their bag suppers together….and then have some fun cabin or cabin/double cabin activity….. sounds like things are still pretty similar.
    And without even realizing it, those nights at camp by the lake are going to be cherished memories!

    Thanks for giving these Illahee girls these wonderful traditions for their own memories!

  3. I know I’m probably speaking on behalf of most parents, but after reviewing each day’s experiences our children are having, it makes me ask with some degree of envy when Camp Illahee will be scheduling camp sessions for the parents?? Please put me down for the 2 week session.

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