Kicking off the 2020-2021 Academy at SOAR and GAP Year at SOAR with In-Person Programming! 

by Andrea Wackerle

It has been a great start to the Academy and GAP Year at SOAR! Our students, gappers, and staff are so happy to be programming in-person and we could not have asked for a better start to the year.

In Waynesville, NC, the Academy at SOAR kicked off the year on August 31st as we welcomed students back for the first time since March. They have already gone on some pretty amazing adventures including canoeing and backpacking in the Smoky Mountains and visiting West Virginia to hike Dolly Sods and climb the New River Gorge! So far students have gone canoeing, rock climbing, bouldering, backpacking, hiking, whitewater rafting, all while still attending classes. Although the school year looks a little different, the Academy is making the best of it and creating many new memories. Senior student Natalie Moore stated, “Although situations can be tough the adventures will always be out there waiting for you!”

Meanwhile in Dubois, WY, our gappers are creating their own remarkable memories. On their first expedition, gappers backpacked through the Bridger-Teton National Forest, explored Yellowstone National Park, and rock climbed in the City of Rocks in Idaho. They just returned from their second expedition where their adventures took them to the Moab desert’s canyonlands in Utah. They got to go mountain biking, zip-lining, volunteering, and canoeing down the Green River! Along with all of these outstanding adventures, gappers have started their college classes and will begin lifeguard certification in the next week. GAP Year Director Ian Moore stated, “GAP Year at SOAR started off with a beautiful fall snow, quickly melting off for great sunny weather at Eagle View Ranch! Gappers have spent time hiking through the Shoshone National Forest, climbing on the Alpine Tower, and exploring Sinks Canyon! All gappers are settling in for a year full of adventure!”


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