Day 5-June 26th
We started the day with a walking tour of the historic town of Buchanan. To tie into the theme of the day, “River Communities,” we observed the ways the James River has affected people for hundreds of years. We learned that the James was a shipping artery for many Western frontiersmen, who produced tobacco and iron. The town also supported the Civil War and the development of the batteau. The use of bateaux was phased out by the invention of the train, and the boats are now James River artifacts.
Several river miles later, we paddled our fifth Class II rapid on the James. It was an invigorating experience, due to the fast moving water. Our Team took a break to swim in a calm eddy, surf the rapid, and fish. Some students braved the rapid and swam through the whitewater. Soon, we realized a storm was brewing upon us, so we quickly paddled to camp. We had to use buckets to bail many gallons of rainwater from our canoes. Once we unloaded our gear at camp, we raced to see which team— boys or girls— could set up the tents faster. There is still a controversy over the competition winner.
The campfire and veggie chili made for a much-needed cozy ending to the evening at Breeden’s Bottom.