Sunny skies, slight breeze, full van, the first ever Outdoor Adventure Paddle Boarding day trip was a success. Eleven of us packed into the van at 9 a.m. Saturday Sept. 12, and we headed to White Rock Lake. Despite the Saturday morning wake up call, the van was buzzing with both experienced lake goers and first-timers.
We unloaded the van on the west side of the lake, next to one of the boat docks. We gave the participants grapes, clementines, and granola bars for breakfast while Manuel and I went over basic water vehicle safety and a quick how-to for paddle boarding, kayaking, and canoeing.
We were on the lake by 10:30. Excited participants flocked to the far side of the lake, proud and excited of their new-found paddling skills. After reaching the east shore of the lake, some paddle-boarders decided they had fallen one too many times, and switched out with the kayakers and canoe team in the water.
That’s when the wind picked up. It was noon, and with our goal of leaving by 2 p.m., Manuel and I knew it was time to start the struggle back to the west shore for lunch. He raced off, as best as he could in his kayak, and I hung back with the new group of paddle-boarders to make sure they were able to fight the strong current. After an hour-long struggle, the last of us made it back to the dock, and Manuel was already busy on the grill.
I took up the position of sue chef, and within a few minutes the first batch of burgers was ready for the eager, hungry participants.
After a leisurely lunch, everyone pitched in loading up the van and trailer, and a few extra curious students learned how to strap in the boats to keep them stable while on the high way. We made it back to campus at 3 p.m., just in time to catch the start of the Boulevard happenings before our game against UNT.
Karly Hanson, SMU OA Trip Leader