Southern Adventist University’s outdoor leadership program offers adventure programs that focus on helping people learn new activities and facilitate development of leadership traits. The foundation of our program is to provide a safe and fun environment that ministers to the needs of your group.
Most of the activities listed can either be led as a trip or taught as an educational class. Any activity can become an intentional learning experience.
There is an abundance of backpacking opportunities around the Chattanooga area, which makes it an ideal place for customizing a trip that fits the needs of hikers at all levels. Southern offers trips from single-day hikes to multi-day adventures. Experienced guides bring participants in contact with some of the most beautiful areas around the southeastern United States. Priority is placed not only on the miles attained, but also on the experience.
Southern is fortunate to have a 200-by-50 rock face that people are able to use while developing their skills on campus. The school also offers climbing around Chattanooga. These trips can be customized as to number of participants, terrain, and skill level. All trips will be led by an experienced climber. It is one of the goals of the program to help participants overcome fears, as our staff strives to help enhance participants' skills in a safe and fun environment.
Southern is located in one of the areas of highest cave density in the world, with more than 14,000 documented caves. The limestone karst of TAG (Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia) provides endless exploration of real “land down under,” where 10 of the deepest caves in North America are found. Southern also has a cave on campus that allows groups to explore nearly a mile of walking, squeezing, crawling, and swimming passages.
The natural world comes with many challenges. Traditional cultures have learned to overcome these challenges in very different ways compared to today’s technology-driven culture. These classes are designed to remove fear and empower you to face any situation.
Participate in traditional survival skills and learn new tricks that provide for your most basic human needs. Learn to create fire from natural materials, collect clean drinking water, move with the environment around you, and feed your belly in a number of different ways. Programs can be created around specific topics to cover large areas of skills and interests.
Skills covered include, but are not limited to:
Tennessee and the Southeast region have a wide variety of opportunities for canoeing. With an abundance of streams, rivers, and scenic lakes, our canoeing programs can take you down the whitewaters of the Hiwassee or for an easy sunset paddle to Nickajack Cave to watch
thousands of bats head out for the night.
Experienced guides teach basic paddling skills as participants in each canoe learn to work as a team in order to keep the canoe on the right course.
Kayaking is a sport that can test you mentally and physically. Southern’s outdoor leadership program can help you learn the basics and fine-tune your kayaking skills with an experienced instructor. The greater Chattanooga area provides tons of opportunities to test your skills on rivers like the Hiwassee, Nantahala, and Ocoee. Once mastered, kayaking can range from a relaxing float on a lazy river or lake to a wild adrenaline-packed run down some serious white water. There is no better way to spend a hot summer day than crashing through the waves of local watering holes!
The area around Southern is full of exciting rivers to explore. Rafting is a fun way to experience all the Southeast has to offer. Southern provides trips on the Ocoee and Hiwassee– two rivers that cover a wide range of challenging water features and skill levels. Rafting is a great way to spend time with friends and family as well as to push your limits.