After-school wilderness program launches

May 17, 2017

Camden — Sundog Outdoor Expeditions, a program of the Midcoast Outdoor Leadership Initiative, is accepting applications May 15 to June 15 for fall after-school canoeing and rock climbing programs for fifth- to eighth-graders in Knox and Waldo counties.

Beginning in September, Sundog OE participants will meet after school twice a week for technical skill sessions taught in the field by local partners from the Hurricane Island Outward Bound School, Maine Sport Outfitters, and the Atlantic Climbing School. After the skill sessions, Sundog OE participants put their expedition skills to use on a culminating multi-day adventure in rock climbing, canoeing, or winter backcountry touring.

“Midcoast Maine offers some of the most accessible adventure spots in the world. Within 20 minutes, you can be hiking to a summit, kayaking on the ocean, canoeing down pristine rivers, or roping up to climb a few pitches. This accessibility, paired with the best guides in the area, provides youth with a grand opportunity. We hope to introduce middle school students to how to safely perform these exciting outdoor activities and teach skills they can use for the rest of their lives,” said Erin Jackson, program manager, in a news release.

Sundog OE programs incorporate elements of Leave No Trace ethics, route navigation, meteorology, cooking and other essential skills important for safety and fun in the wilderness. Participants of this program will learn from professional guides how to navigate the wilderness safely while also being mindful of others, their impact on the functionality of a group, and the environment.

Sundog OE seasonal programs are scheduled for Fall 2017, Winter 2018 and Spring 2018. Fall sessions start Monday, Sept. 11 and run to Oct. 20. Program fees cover most expenses, with scholarships available for qualifying participants. For program details and application, please visit sundogOE.com.

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