The Raiders loaded up and headed north this past week (July 21-27) into the great Smoky Mountains for Brevard Distance Runners Camp up in beautiful Brevard, NC. The camp was orchestrated by Norm and Nancy Witek, Norm is the head cross country coach at Brevard College. The camp is in its 29th year as the Brevard Distance Running Camp, but has been going on since the early 1970’s as other names. The kids were there with about 500 other runners from all over the United States, staying in the dorms and eating in the college dining hall. The kids ran all over the mountains in the Pisgah National Forest and Dupont State Parks. When they were not running, they were participating in team bonding activities organized by the camp, as well as huge game activities like that of basketball tournaments, dodgeball tournaments, and the always fun to watch “Gladiator” tournaments. In the mornings we either had morning runs, core strength sessions, or yoga sessions. In the afternoons we would shuttle into the mountains for the runs in the very challenging trails up some serious mountain ranges. The last run of the week is called the “Graduation Run” from base up to the top, with a culmination of an unbelievable view from “John’s Rock”. The 3 mile assent is approximately 1000 feet of climbing.
The Raiders who made the trip were not sure about what they might go through or what really would be gained from this adventure. One thing was clear, beyond the fitness gained, the biggest takeaway was the memories made along with the bonds made with other campers, camp coaches, junior counselors, and most importantly, their own Randolph classmates and coaches. This was an amazing experience and everyone can’t wait to go back in 2020!