Do I work for Boeing? No, but sometimes it feels like I do…
A couple of weeks ago Boealps started up for the season. Boealps, for those of you who weren’t with us back in 2015, is a mountaineering course we took through Boeing. It starts early spring and is comprised of weekly classroom sessions and weekend day and overnight climbs. Kyle and I had a blast taking the class, it pushed me immensely to grow and try things that scared me, and we have been looking forward to instructing it this year! Of course, I should say “instructing” since we are really lowly junior instructors, not to be trusted with anything too crazy. And thank goodness, after a summer of thru hiking I am excited to solidify what I know, refresh what I’ve forgotten, and share what I’ve learned.
A couple of weeks ago we had our first in class session and then last weekend we had our first “outing”. The first couple of weekend adventures are actually clinic style outings, involving a round robin of different stations were students get to practice their recently acquired skills. This last weekend we hung out all day at St. Edwards State Park helping students learn how to travel on a fixed line before they moved on to learning how to belay, repel, navigate and coil a rope. Tomorrow we will be heading to Mt Erie where we will take the skills they practiced at St Eds, and raise the stakes, considerably. No more repelling down a gentle hill, now the repel just got vertical. There is no doubt it will be fun and extremely wet (did you know we’ve only had three sunny days in Seattle since October? Kyle won’t stop griping about it).
Boealps is a club run through boeing but it isn’t just for Boeing employees, although there has to be a certain ratio of Boeing to non-Boeing students. Kyle and I loved our Boeing club experience SO much we decided to go even deeper. Last night we went to the initial orientation for BEWET, Boeing’s white water river rafting club. And yes, I typed that correctly, the club’s name is BEWET. Get used to it.
So let’s back up here for a second. You might be thinking, wait a tick, you two are venturing into a NEW outdoor realm? What’s wrong with the hiking and the backpacking and the climbing and the mountaineering? Oh nothing, we just felt like we didn’t have enough to cram into the few weekends a year where it’s nice around here! But seriously, we recognize we have a lot going on, but white water river rafting is something we have been yearning to try for a while now. BEWET has a really easy set up in order to get guide certified, it is a lot less structured than Boealps and encourages you to sign up for weekend trips throughout the summer and into the fall as your availability allows. We have friends who have taken the class and we have been eyeing it for a while now, we figured why not take the plunge this year? So, next weekend we will be getting our feet wet on a river for the first time for our initial training!
I have no idea if I will like white water river rafting, but I am excited. I am excited to see the landscape from a completely different vantage point. Many of the rivers we have the opportunity to raft with BEWET are ones we are familiar with because we drank from their headwaters or looked down their valleys while on the PCT. But I know nothing of their curves, their flow, their power, their path. I am unfamiliar with what it feels like to be swept along in their currents and I am aching to find out. Now lets just hope my piddly little arms can keep up.
As always we are excited to take you on this new journey with us! If you’re interested in getting some special behind the scenes goodness then sign up to be one of our Patrons by clicking on the link below!