Club & Greek

Outdoors Club is In Tents!

Club Hosts Their First Trip of the Year to Leigh River, PA


Outdoors Club in TentsThe Outdoors Club took 47 students to Leigh River, Pennsylvania this past weekend for two days of hiking, camping and kayaking. The $139 value of the trip only cost $60 a student and covered a ride there, food, campsite fees, a Whitewater Rafters Challengers experience and 100 shots at a paintball range.

The Outdoors Club gathered in lot 18 early Friday morning at about 8:00 to load the bus in preparation for the weekend.

“We arrived at about 12:00 pm to cloudy skies and rain,” said Brett Gilmartin, junior. “But everyone was all smiles and excited to be there regardless of the weather. We knew it would clear up.”

Upon arriving, the club members immediately got to work unpacking the bus and setting up lunch.

To stay out of the rain and keep their gear dry, the club unpacked underneath a pavilion at the campsite.

According to Greg Cenicola, junior and secretary of the club, the rain cleared up after about three hours and the hiking began.

The club decided to cancel the guided hike due to the rain and go out on their own to explore.

“After hopping a fence and traveling through a 200 yard pine tree field we finally got to the forest,” said Cenicola. He then went on to explain how they stumbled upon a trail and began trekking their way through the unfamiliar woods. The group stopped to climb trees, explore the woods and hop through streams. “About 40 minutes in, it began to torrential downpour. Most of us made our way back to camp but some kept hiking despite the rain.”

The group settled down for hot chocolate and dinner as the rain subsided. Tents were set up by this point along with a roaring campfire.

 Gilmartin said, “We all just hung out by the fire enjoying the finally clear skies and each other’s company. It was real relaxing, some guys even decided to go off on another hike when it got later.”

“We left around 10:00 pm,” said Cenicola. “Myself, three other club members and advisor (Anthony) Jamison decided to hike to a state park and mountain that Jamison pulled up on his phone. We brought flashlights, utility knives and even a spear Steve (Steger, junior) carved out of a stick.”

 The elite group of hikers climbed over dead trees, through a swamp and over a stream or two. “We traveled a total of five kilometers and got back to camp around 1:00 am. It was awesome.”

Saturday morning, the group was awake around 8:00 ready to go kayaking down the Leigh River.

 The group was led by two guides from the Whitewater Rafters Challengers. Everyone was given a wet suit and the option to raft with five others or by themselves in a kayak.

Steger said, “It was a great day to take out the kayaks. The water was warm and the river was high from the rainfall from the night before.”

The group kayaked about 10 miles d own river, stopping only three times for lunch or the option to switch from a raft to a kayak. They played tag in the kayaks with their oars while drifting down the river. Those on the kayaks had some fun with the groups on the rafts by spinning them in circles before the drops.

This was the first Outdoors Club trip Ryan Cerankowski, junior and software engineer major, attended. “I heard about the trip through emails and posters on campus,” said Cerankowski. “I thought the trip was amazing and a great way to relieve stress. I definitely plan on going on the next one.”

Before the group made their way home they each got to shoot off 100 paintballs at the camp grounds shooting range as compensation for the cancelled hike. The club left around 6:00 pm and made it back to campus shortly after 9:00pm.

Professor William Reynolds, advisor of the club, said, “Another amazing trip with some of the most adventurous young adults in NJ. Two days of rain, wind, thunder and heavy water did not slow us down.”

The Outdoors club frequently does day trips, hikes and beach clean ups, as well as surf trips with the recently absorbed surf club. The club is planning a hiking and camping trip in November, but the next big trip won’t be until spring. The Outdoors club meets at 3:30 pm on Wednesdays in room 132, Bey Hall.

PHOTO COURTESY of Sarah Freeman