This past weekend, the GLC and River Rangers went white water rafting along the Arkansas River. We departed from Denver on Friday morning, spent the day in Buena Vista, rafting through Browns Canyon. We set up camp at Turtle Rock Campground and enjoyed a delicious dinner - and s’mores of course. The next morning, we woke up and did it again, rafting a lower portion of the Arkansas and ending near Salida.
Browns Canyon offers some of the most popular white water rafting in the whole US of A. It is a recently designated national monument, and we spent our two days admiring the geologic features and beautiful landscape that make up the canyon. We even spotted some bighorn sheep! This section of the Arkansas River boasts class II-III+ whitewater rapids, and we got to experience it all at high water. On Friday, we split up the 10 miles we rafted with a tasty and scenic riverside lunch.
Our fabulous guides were all part of cityWILD, a Denver-based nonprofit that aims to engage youth in experiential learning opportunities that boldly address issues of inequity in education, economic opportunity, and access to the outdoors. They provide comprehensive, tuition-free programs promote themes of personal empowerment, leadership, and community participation while motivating participants to reach their full potential at school, at home, and in their communities. Using the outdoors as a classroom and laboratory for hands-on learning, cityWILD offers year-round, youth development programs which provide at risk students with challenging activities, opportunities for growth, healthy lifestyles, peer bonding, and supportive adults. Two of our river guides are cityWILD alums, and it was great hearing from them about their experiences.
We learned about the effects of dams on rivers, people, and local habitats, from our very own TGF educator, Eve. And our development director shared his work experience in the nonprofit sector, and how he ended up at The Greenway Foundation.
All in all, it was a fabulous weekend, and we can’t wait for next year!