Argyll Adventure Weekend
The weekend of 3/9/12-3/11/12, the IFSA Butler program students went on a trip to the Argyll Forest. This included the IFSA-Butler students from Stirling, St. Andrews, University of Edinburgh, University of Glasgow, and the Glasgow Art School (Hopefully I did not forget anyone). Everyone from our cozy Stirling group was able to attend! J We left our University at about 2:00 pm on Friday and travelled to pick up the Glasgow students. Once we picked them up, we had a total of 15 people on our bus. We had so much extra room for activities lol.
Our final destination was Benmore Outdoor Education Center in the Argyll Forest. In order to get there, we had to ride a ferry across a river. To be more specific, the bus drove onto a VERY small loading dock ferry, and then the ferry drove us over on the bus, it was truly a frightening experience, but obviously, we survived. The Benmore Outdoor Education center is amazing! We stayed in a castle-hostel! We had multiple activities we could have chosen from, but we could only pick two. The choices ranged from Gorge Scrambling to Kayaking to Mountain Biking and many more! Due to my knee limitations, I chose Hiking and Kayaking!
We were put into groups according to what activities we were doing and I was in Group 8. The group consisted of seven girls, five of which were from the IFSA-Butler Stirling group, one from Edinburgh, and one from Glasgow! Our activity leader, Angela, was so much fun! She smuggled us hot chocolate and donuts from the kitchen for kayaking! Our activities began on Saturday morning. During our hike (our first activity), she introduced us to geo-caching. You go online www.geocaching.com, you find coordinates for a hidden geo-cache, and then you go find it. Once you find the geo-cache, you leave an item, and then you take an item. I left a blue hair tie and took an Ariel figurine lol! After lunch, we went kayaking! I have never been kayaking before, but it was so much fun! Nobody tipped (thank goodness, and we all had a fabulous time! After we finished kayaking, Angela asked if any of us wanted to go for a swim. Of course, being the water baby I am, I said yes! Two of the other girls joined me and so we started on the shoreline and just ran for the water. I probably swam three strokes and then could not breathe. Once we all got out of the water, we were freezing (of course), but I do not regret doing it lol. We had dinner, and then were so exhausted that we pretty much all went to our room and passed out.
Sunday morning we were headed back to Stirling, but along the way, we stopped off at Loch Lomond. J We got some amazing pictures, and luckily, the sun came out for us! After leaving the Loch, we dropped off the Glasgow students, and then continued on to Stirling. Being back was nice, because it is lovely to have my own room, but I did miss the quiet of the Argyll Forest! My advice is to go on ANY and ALL trips through your programs!