Post Trips

TAASC Tadpole Update

September 2021

The new fall season is off to a great start for all TAASC groups this year; however, we wanted to give a special update on our new young girls program:

The TAASC Tadpoles currently have 4 members, with more expected to join, and will be capped at 10 Tadpoles. We have been meeting at Catawba Meadows Thursdays 4:30-6:00 to have access to wooded areas, open fields, and running streams. All of our meetings have a similar flow. The girls have a chance to socialize and share at our opening circle. Followed by a group building or energetic game. Lessons are typically two parts, a naturalist aspect and a recreation aspect. Last Thursday, the girls went on a tree identification scavenger hunt before setting up and walking on slacklines. Each meeting ends with journaling and a closing circle. 

Through this meeting and lesson style Tadpoles hopes to: Teach girls to love the outdoors--to replace the fear of dirt and bugs all too often taught to girls with appreciation, to prepare girls to move to the Youngers group-- learning to be outside comfortably will allow them more energy to learn harder skills in years to come, and to Instill self confidence--confidence is the key ingredient for the bravery required to paddle whitewater or climb mountains.

We have followed closely in the footsteps of Asheville TAASC's booming girls program and can not thank Beth, Greg, and Becky enough for the inspiration and model. We hope Tadpoles can be another way TAASC positively impacts the Morganton community for years to come. 

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Old Flackamite Climbing and Camping Post Trip

Sep 18th-19th, 2021

Last weekend's Climbing and Camping Trip to Old Flackamite was great! With many new students on this trip, there were many firsts from camping, climbing outdoors, cooking a real meal on a camp stove, to dealing with a bit of weather. Everyone hammered down and climbed their hearts out on Saturday until a bit of weather ensued. The olders stepped up to clean routes in the rain and organize the youngers to head out. After a fun night at camp, the group went on a short day hike to Celestial Point.

Check out all the photos here

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Water Safety Course and Kayak Rolling Clinic

August, 2021

In August holding tradition, we hosted the Water Safety Course as well as Kayak Rolling Clinics. These courses and clinics are a great way for everyone to get back in the TAASC groove as well as learn life saving skills and techniques. A big thanks goes out to the Sevensma's and Cioffoletti's for letting us use their homes on Lake James to host these events!

Check out all the photos here

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Eleven Day Canoe trip

June 16th-June 26th, 2021

The eleven day Canoe Trip was an absolute success. We had ten students, Whisper, Mike, and Jacob. Starting on the Wateree River in Camden, SC and finishing in Jamestown, SC on the Santee River, we crushed out 170 miles. TAASC has completed this section of river five times before in 1998, 2002, 2010, 2012, and 2017.  

 

Overall the weather held out for us with only two afternoon t-storms and one rainy day. Three nights we battled four to five foot swells on the river moving camp back and even moving out! The headwinds on Lake Marion provided some spice, but only made those beautiful sandy beach campsites even sweeter. 

 

We are spending the next week at Folly Beach, SC in celebration of everyone's successful expedition!

 

Check out all the photos Here

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Flackamite Climbing and Camping

May 14th -16th, 2021

 

A few weeks ago we had the classic three day and two night Secret Flackamite trip -- Shhhh it's a secret. With many new students and climbers along with a crew of seasoned olders, we were able to crank out pitches! The evenings were filled with silly games and plenty of ramen noodles. Sunday, we even made it up to the Sitting Bear Spire for the Sunrise

 

Check out all the photos here

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Catawba River Canoe

May 1st, 2021

 

This past weekend's Catawba River trip was a great success. With eight students, we rallied through the rapids below the bridge water dam all the way to Judges in Morganton! We reviewed basic paddling skills and introduced more complex skills like ferrying, communication, and eddying. 

 

Check out all the photos here

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Stone Mountain Climbing Trip

April 16th-18th, 2021

 

Last weekend was the classic Stone Mountain Trip. With a small crew, we were able to cover serious ground and learn a bunch. Following a warm night at the campground on Friday, we quickly made it into the park and split into two parties of three. We climbed many of the classics and even got Eli and Meadow leading.

 

Check out all the photos here

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Bynum Bluff to Babel Tower Backpacking

March 27th & 28th, 2021

 

Our small group of seven descended into the northwest corner of the Linville Gorge Wilderness Area encountering heavy rain, wind, cranberry-sized hail, and plenty of electricity. While primarily new students, the group handled the conditions wonderfully with positive mental attitudes and quality systems to stay dry. This was a great way to train for the upcoming Appalachian trail trip!

Check out all the photos here

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Table Rock Attic Window Rappel

March 13th, 2021

 

The Attic Window Rappel was an absolute blast! After the three mile hike up the closed road and the summit trail, students warmed up on Eli's bushwack adventure and a series of 40' rappels. Most everyone made it down the 200' Attic Window Rappel and three of our twelve students had only rappelled once in our gym prior to this trip! A big thanks goes to the olders for their leadership and mentorship to the youngers on this trip!

Check out all the photos here

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Technical Rescue Clinic

Feburary 5th &6th, 2021

 

While we had to reschedule the Stone Mountain Trip due to snow and cold weather, the Portaledging and a Technical Rescue clinic did not disappoint! For those that could make it, Friday night was filled with juggling lessons, cooking outside, an old school climbing film, and portaledging from the tower.

 

Following cooking breakfast, we all buckled down for a crash course in basic first aid and technical rescue. From scene size up to life threats, hyporaps, BEAMing, carrying a liter, to a full liter lower, our crew killed it!

 

Check out all the photos here

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Little Hump Winter Hike

January 16th, 2021

 

Last Saturday, we ventured into a winter wonderland with a fantastic crew! After an early meeting time, we loaded up and drove out to Roaring Creek just below the Over Mountain Shelter on the Appalachian and Over Mountain Victory Trails. Before we could head out, we got the unique team building opportunity of getting our three vehicle crew unstuck from the snow and ice!!!

 

The team cruised up the steep one mile section of the Overmountain Victory Trail as it began to snow harder. A quick lunch and layering session ensued before braving the alpine zone above the tree line. With temperatures around 10 degrees and the wind whipping up to 20 miles per hour, the team marched to the summit long enough to snap a few photos and head down to seek refuge in the treeline.

 

Winter hikes and winter mountaineering trips are important tests of personal equipment systems and mental fortitude. Everyone had a great attitude and mostly solid systems!

 

 

Check out all of the photos here

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Carolina Climber Coalition (CCC) Trail Work Day

September 26th, 2021

Last Sunday's Trail work day with the CCC, Carolina Climbers Coalition, was fantastic. We had an amazing turnout with 26 people! All these hands made it easy to bench cut in the remaining trail and try more technical skills like building rock and log steps. When students were not digging their hearts out, there were vine swings to play on, boulder caves to explore, and many crawling critters to examine. We are grateful we could serve the Burnsville climbing community while exposing students to the joys of trail work and the CCC. 

The CCC has been around since 1995 securing, buying, preserving, and protecting our climbing areas in North Carolina and across the southeast.  If you want to learn more about the CCC or become a member click here.

Check out all the photos here

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 Summersville Lake and New River Gorge

Sep 3rd-6th, 2021

The Summersville Lake Trip was a grand way to officially start the fall semester. From Grabner -- an inflatable whitewater canoe -- wars, deep water soloing, to sport climbing, everyone had a blast on Saturday. With a bit of weather moving in on us for our Sunday plans, we changed gears; one group went on a hike out to Longs View which overlooks the New River Gorge while the lead climbers headed over to the overhang protected Rico Suave Buttress to climb a few quality trad routes. Following the hike and climbs, we all regrouped to walk under the New River Gorge Bridge; a big shoutout goes to Mike's friend Benji for hooking us up with the tour!

Check out all the photos here

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Beach House

June 26th -July 3rd, 2021

Following the amazing 11 day canoe Trip TAASC students were rewarded with a beach vacation. Everyone had a blast at the Beach. Our house was right on the water giving us easy access to surfing, surf kayaking, and beach play. Highlights of the trip included paddling out in tropical storm Danny, mass skateboarding, and the Gallon Milk Challenge.

Check out the photos here

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Cliff Hangers and Short Off

May 29th-30th, 2021


Last weekend was one of those trips where we just rolled with the punches! It was planned to climb at Hawksbill for two days and bivy at the climbers camp, but weather pushed us out. We opted to climb indoors at the impressive Cliff Hangers Gym in Mooresville. Everyone rope climbed and bouldered hard. Aspiring Lead Climbers Meadow and Eli crushed out some hard routes on lead.

 

That night, we changed gears and hiked up to the seldom visited "Johns Kitchen" on the ledges of Short Off. We cooked dinner and bivyed. The next morning we spend exploring Short Off; everyone got their dose of bushwhacking for the week!

 

Check out all the photos here

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Flatwater Canoeing and Swift Water Rescue

May 22nd -23rd, 2021

 

This past weekend's trip was a huge success despite the low water table. Saturday, the group put in on Lake James at the Linville Boat Access. We reviewed and practiced paddle strokes as we travelled into the tailwaters of the Linville river. On the way back, our team encountered and diligently battled headwinds. The rest of the day was spent playing and practicing T Rescues -- as needed!

 

Saturday evening, we celebrated Meadow's birthday with cupcakes and played games at the TAASC gym where we all stayed that night. Sunday, we had  graduate Noah Green teach us about river dynamics and the complexities of hydraulics at Wilson's Creek. Between play we learned about the rescue position and reviewed rope throwing. Toward the end of the day, we even practiced setting up z-drags and 3-1 pulley systems to rescue pinned boats!

 

Check out all the photos here

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Lake James Canoe

April 25th, 2021

We spent last Sunday paddling on Lake James with many new or first time paddlers on the water. There were plenty of formal lessons about boats, paddles, paddle strokes, and rope throwing! The end of the day provided a bit of extra spice as the classic North to South katabatic winds began roaring down the channel. Eric Sevensma came to the rescue when a few of us could not battle the headwinds -- thanks for the tow!

 

Check out all the photos here

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Appalachian Trail Backpacking

April 5th - 9th, 2021

Over spring break, two tenacious groups spent five and three days out on the Appalachian Trail. The long mileage group began at Dickies Gap on Monday, and the short mileage group began on Wednesday just North of Damascus. Both Groups met up on Thursday night just outside of Damascus and completed 51 and 17 miles respectively. A big shoutout goes to all the students who were able to set aside the time to immerse themselves and maybe experience some type two fun over spring break!

 

Check out all of the photos here

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Bear Rocks Backpacking

March 20th & 21st, 2021

 

Two weekends ago, we caught a great spell of weather to play in the Wilson's Creek Wilderness Area. We started on Saturday morning with quite the adventure ahead of us. After a creek crossing, meandering up to the infamous sinkhole and setting up basecamp, we began our day hike with both Olders and Youngers. Following the old Holly Springs Trail, we made our way up to the maze of trails on Brown Mountain where we navigated our way to the bear rocks! A quick bushwacking experience lead back to basecamp -- dinner and a warm sleeping bag. The youngers left that evening while the Olders practiced leave no trace fires and refining their camp craft in preparation for the Appalachian Trail Trip next month!

 

 

Check out all the photos here

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Trail Work with Wild South

February 20th, 2021

 

Warm weather, hard work, and wonderful attitudes all around on the Trail Work Day. TAASC partnered with Wild South again to continue aiding in the construction of the new Leadmine trail! The Leadmine Trail will connect the Linville Gorge Trail to the Mountains to Seas in the southwest corner of the Linville Gorge Wilderness Area making a great impact in expanding our trail systems. 

 

Time and time again these young people show what it means to be a steward of the land and trails we love so much. Motivated by their passion for the outdoors.... and bribery doughnuts, TAASC has cut over 300yrds of fresh trail on Leadmine ensuring they will never walk that path without thinking--I built this. 

 

Thank you everyone for your hard work. 

 

Check out all the photos here

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Grandfather Mountaineering

January 1st & 31st, 2021

 

Two weekends ago, we had the opportunity to play in a bit of snow with some new pieces of gear. The original two day backpacking trip was cancelled but, the A team showed up bright and early on Sunday despite the cold rain in Morganton. Following dry fitting crampons, we headed up to the eastern slopes of Grandfather on 221.

 

Before starting the journey up the Daniel Boone Scout Trail via the Asusti and Tanawha Trails, we learned about our new gear including crampons, treking poles, snowshoes, and ice axes. We learned how and why we use these tools. The crew fired right up trail until about midday when the sun came out; the radiant heat quickly began to melt the snow in the conifers. For the rest of the day, we pushed through cold rain like conditions all the way to the summit of Calloway peak!

 

The adventure didn't stop at the summit; there was still over 4 miles of steep and slushy terrain to move over as the sunset. Powered by headlamps, pretzels, and cheese sticks, the A team made it off the mountain in one piece with great attitudes. Thanks for making that day a great one crew!

Check out all the photos here

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