Why GRP Expeditions are unique

 r1a3138.jpg?ixlib=rails 2.1

I recently posted reasons the GRP Expeditions are beneficial to your teens. We have a fantastic lineup of options to provide meaningful experiences for your camper. Our Leadership in Training (LIT) Expedition is a great way to enhance your college applications or resumé and can pave the way to becoming a GRP staff member. In 2022, we were pleased to offer jobs to all 8 of our LIT participants at the conclusion of the program!

In addition to what our program offers, we are often asked how the GRP Expeditions differ from other expedition programs offered by other companies. Our expeditions offer a unique take on backcountry exploration and what it means to be an expedition team member. Some programs offer month-long expeditions, like the 30-day courses provided by NOLS. This can be a daunting thing to jump into with no major experience. The Blue Ridge Expedition (BRX) and the Outer Banks Expedition (OBX) each take place over roughly 2 weeks. BRX offers 12-day and 16-day options, and each OBX trip is 12 days. 2 weeks in these settings is a worthwhile amount of time to practice independence from home life, how to function as a member of a team, and really get the chance to connect with the environment around you. We all have a responsibility for our team’s success, but this responsibility requires practice and time to master. For those unsure if they are ready to commit to one of our 2-week trips, we also offer shorter 6-day trips with our Basecamp Expeditions. These are the perfect stepping stones into the expedition lifestyle!

Another aspect of the GRP Expeditions that differs from these other programs is our basecamp setups. For example, the BRX team gets to call our Reasonover Basecamp home while in between the different parts of the trip. The Reasonover Basecamp, though simple in its form, provides shelter for cooking and group activities. We have covered and elevated platforms for each sleeping group. The OBX team has an outpost in Stella, NC, which allows for dry storage of our belongings and space to set up our tents. These basecamps enable our teams to have a space to relax and acclimate to living outside in a simple or reduced setting. We will take overnight adventures to islands and mountaintops, but having a home base provides quite a bit of structure compared to living on the trail for weeks at a time.

Finally, GRP Expeditions provide a continuation of the experience and community that is born in our summer camp. It is common for 50% or more of an expedition group to be returning campers. For those who are now too old to return to our summer camp, we can offer a challenging, yet nurturing environment rich in GRP traditions. We start each session with a respect circle, bring in familiar songs and games, and continue the search for the elusive grand slam! This emphasis on community also leads to so much success for people new to GRP. Even if your expedition is the first time with us, you will feel welcomed and encouraged by our staff and return campers.

I would love to see you on the expedition team this summer! If you have any questions or want to discuss how these trips can benefit you, reach out anytime. You can call our office at (828) 698-8828 and ask for Jace, or you can reach me via email at jace@greenriverpreserve.org. See you soon!