Feb 25, 2014

Dayna’s Canoe Trip Essay

Here is an essay recently written by camper Dayna Katz for a class at school, certainly worth sharing.

13-Day Canoe Trip

Last year I got the pleasure to go on a thirteen-day canoe trip with five other girls while at Camp Tamakwa in Algonquin Park, Canada. Incredible, difficult, challenging, an accomplishment and a great experience are how I would describe the trip. Ever since fourth grade I have had the privilege of attending Camp Tamakwa. Each year campers go on a canoe trip with kids of the same age. And every year the trips are longer and become more demanding. I had so much fun on the trip and also learned a great deal about myself.

On the trip I learned a lot about friendship and the importance of working as a team. We had multiple opportunities to work as a team when we were on portages. A portage is when you are canoeing and there is a block of land in your way, you can’t go around it so you have to carry everything to the other side so you can go on with the trip. Having to portage was very frequent. We had to do this at least five or more times each day. Portages are all different distances. Everyone helps each other by walking together, singing songs, making up silly games and basically keeping each other’s minds off how much farther we have. This benefits the entire group on long portages and when you have a really heavy pack. I carried the food barrel which had all of the food in it for the first half of the trip, and when we got new supplies I then carried the food for the other half. It probably weighed around thirty pounds when it was full.

When people finish before others they go back and help their friends. We modeled friendship and teamwork when we helped each other set up the tents, find firewood, cooking and bonded over playing games. I have become a stronger, reliable and devoted team player. It’s not about finishing first; it’s about finishing together, as a team.

This trip also taught me a lot about dedication and commitment. Things like portaging and canoeing were complex and exhausting at times, I had to be dedicated to overcome obstacles and finishing the challenge. We canoed and portaged a total of about one hundred and thirty miles over the course of this trip. It was probably one of the most demanding things I have ever done, but after; it was also one of the most rewarding and exciting experiences. Being driven, dedicated, and committed have all shown me that teamwork is vital, hard work pays off, and to always face challenges, never give up.

My thirteen day canoe trip was a life changing experience. I now feel invincible, and have much more confidence. Looking back at the memories I am so glad I went. I will never forget what this trip showed me about myself and how it helped me become the courageous and secure person I am today.

A huge How!How! to Dayna for writing this amazing essay and her wonderful perspective on canoe tripping, Tamakwa-style.

If anyone else has amazing camp stories, essays or projects from school they would like to share, please forward them to us.

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