The Manor of Hope guys have been keeping busy and having sober fun these last few weeks.

First it was a camping trip to Gettysburg, and then a trip down to the NJ shore.  And then this past weekend was time for the annual Manor of Hope spring white water rafting trip in the Lehigh River!

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Whitewater Rafting Trip

The white water rafting trip has become a tradition at the Manor, and almost every single resident has participated in at least one trip.  This trip had veterans of previous trips such as Dave, Gary and Scott but for James, Mallozzi and Sam – it was the first time.  Manor of Hope Alumni and white water rafting veteran Elliot volunteered his time and came along to help and have fun with all of the guys.

The gang was up bright and early on Sunday, packing up the van with food, water and all the needed items for a long day at the river. We arrived at Pocono White Water Adventures and promptly checked in. After a short wait, we were called for a debriefing and then we boarded the bus that took us to our launch area.

Captains

The gang was split up in two boats.  The first boat had Gary, Sam, Scott and Jose as the captain.  The second boat had Mallozzi, James, Elliot and Dave (they decided that they were all captains of the boat)!  Normally, a four captain boat doesn’t work out well in real life, however, the 4 captain crew made it work very well!

After some last minute instructions, we were all in the water.  The river was moving at a good rate since they had released the dam earlier that day, and everyone was pretty eager to tackle the first set of rapids.

Man overboard

The gang went over the first few set of rapids with no difficulty and that certainly increased the level of confidence of all!  On the third set of rapids, the four captain crew had no issues, but Jose’s crew had a little bit of an issue on a spot that is notorious for sending guys overboard.  The boat got caught on a rock and spun around, and Scott was almost all the way in the water, but Sam and Gary pulled him up right away and they continued their journey intact!

The two boats continued downstream joking around and throwing buckets of freezing cold water at each other.  The water was COLD! For sure.

Shortly before hitting the halfway mark, Jose’s crew hit another difficult spot and this time Gary went overboard, but in a matter of seconds Scott launched himself across the boat, grabbed Gary and pulled him right out of the water.  The four captain crew was following closely behind and recovered Gary’s lost paddle.  In a matter of seconds, everyone was back in their positions and the journey downstream continued.

The Scenery

In-between sets of rapids, the guys could take a break and enjoy all the lovely scenery that the Lehigh Valley Gorge has to offer.  It really is a beautiful place.

A little over halfway, the group stopped for lunch and to take a little break.  After approximately half an hour, everyone was in the water again.

The gang was having fun, but everyone was eager to get moving again because the best rapids were yet to come.

The four captain crew decided to get rowdy and in a bold move, they kidnapped Gary from his boat for a while, but after some bargaining, they returned him to his boat!

Boat Rescue

Towards the end of the trip and on the last set of rapids, James and the four captain crew rescued a lady that had fallen out of her boat and was in need of help.  James pulled her right out of the water and after his boat got across the rapids set, they all returned her to her boat.  She was very thankful.

The trip concluded at the Lehigh Valley Gorge park entrance.  The guys got back on the bus and returned to Pocono White Water Rafting Adventures.

Teamwork

These trips are certainly fun for everyone.  But it is also a great example of teamwork.  The guys need to rely on each other and work together to get through the rapids, and that is a lesson that they can apply for life!