If you’ve been paying attention to the weather in our area, perhaps checking the Rockbrook weather station, you know we’ve had plenty of rain over the last couple of days. The temperatures have hovered right around 70 degrees (a little cooler at night and a little warmer during the day), but it’s been cloudy and rainy lately— almost 2 inches of rain yesterday and almost 3 the day before that. A trough of low pressure is slowly moving out of the area, but at the moment we are all wearing our “dew coats.” After all, around here rain is really just a “heavy dew.”
Flooding can be a problem in our area as it turns fields lining the French Broad River into expansive lakes, but for Rockbrook only a portion of our horse pasture land is at risk since most of camp is far up the hill from the river. This much rain does swell our creeks and creates much more dramatic waterfalls (like this video of “Stick Biscuit Falls” behind the office shows), but we have an elaborate system of underground culverts and spillways that carry rainwater strategically under, through and around the camp, keeping everything intact despite the rushing runoff.
With only a few exceptions (swimming, e.g.), our activities at camp have carried on nicely in spite of the rain. With so much covered space— our gym, dining hall, activity cabins, stone lodges, porches, barn and arena —we can easily stay out of the rain and still have fun together. All of the craft activities, for example, didn’t even skip a beat today. The potter’s wheels kept spinning, the looms clicked back and forth, and the brushes applied paint and inks to paper in the drawing classes. Yoga, Drama, and Dance all met in their usual buildings.
Also today, several outdoor trips went out for a (little more wet than usual) adventure. The kayakers got out on the Tuckasegee. A big group of Middlers and Seniors took a backpacking trip to an area near John Rock in the Pisgah Forest. And we still ran girls through our zipline course despite the consistent drizzle and periods of rain. Did we get wet? Sure did. Did it ruin any of the trips? Nope. In fact, zipping through the trees in the rain made the ride feel, if anything, a little edgier and more exciting.
The gym became a particularly fun place to be. The Alpine Tower climbers moved inside to the climbing wall to give some of its short, but challenging routes a go. Meanwhile, the gymnastics staff worked on cartwheels with the girls on the other end of the gym, and on the main gym floor, a massive, fun game of dodgeball whipped up. At another point, the counselors pulled out the parachute to play a game where campers would run under it when it was lifted in the air. Another gym game involved pool noodles used as hockey sticks, easily inspiring the girls to race around the gym after a ball.
The girls were particularly happy that their time horseback riding wasn’t cancelled because of the rain. With our new covered riding arena, everyone’s riding lessons could go on as planned. The arena is positioned right next to the new barn, so it’s possible to tack up your horse and walk him directly out of the barn and into the arena without ever getting wet. And no mud too! That’s really nice.
All of this is to say, we are having plenty of fun here at camp, “even in the rainy weather,” as the Rockbrook song says. The girls are extraordinarily resilient in the face of being a little wet, a little muddy, and a little cool most of the day. They happily want to carry on with what we’re here to do— to play together as great friends, to create, to feel a part of a caring, kind community, and to learn and grow by enjoying this beautiful place. Rain or shine, that’s what’s going to happen!