Whitewater kayaking is one of the most popular activities for the BOC, and whitewater kayakers depart from the Schwartz Outdoor Leadership Center each weekend of the fall and spring to run many of Maine's scenic and exciting whitewater rivers. In fact, there are so many fun Class II-IV whitewater runs in the Northeast, that we have not yet come close to paddling them all! Beginning kayak classes are taught each semester, and weekly pool sessions allow kayakers to practice their strokes, brush up on their Eskimo rolls, and learn new techniques for their next adventure on the river. The BOC has all the equipment needed, so students do not need their own gear. Students are taught by American Canoe Association (ACA) certified instructors, and progress from flatwater to whitewater, building on skills that they develop through numerous drills and seemingly endless repetition. Somehow, working on these skills with a beautiful river and mountain backdrop makes all that hard work easier to take, and successfully running that first rapid or being upright after that first successful whitewater roll makes it all worthwhile! Many of the instructors of the BOC are student leaders, who have successfully completed the ACA Whitewater Kayak Instructor Certification Exam, taught every other year by BOC staff. Many of these same instructors were beginning kayakers themselves when they arrived at Bowdoin, and they are all excited to share their knowledge of and passion for whitewater kayaking with other Bowdoin students.
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