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View Our Top Student Group Adventure Pursuits for 2014

View Our Top Student Group Adventure Pursuits for 2014

Whether your youth group contains adrenaline junkies, nature lovers or thrill seekers, the following sampling of adventure pursuits is sure to cover all the bases. From scuba diving to skiing, these activities are bound to keep students engaged and create lifelong memories of being with their peers.

1. Scuba Diving in the Florida Keys

Suit up and scuba dive the Florida Keys in Key Largo to experience an aquatic paradise. All the group needs is the proper equipment and a desire to see magnificent coral reefs, brilliantly-colored fish and neat ship wreckage. Take a rideScuba Diving in the Florida Keys on a custom dive boat to the location and then make a splash after being briefed and guided by a professional, certified diver. Besides the traditional scuba dive adventure, Florida Keys Dive Center does mini-excursions such as the “Wreck Trek Safari” and “Coral Reef Restoration” as well as a night dive at sunset. Offering both equipment rentals and scuba dive instruction, Florida Keys Dive Center is an award-winning establishment with a reputation for safety and satisfaction. (800-433-8946,

2. Rock Climbing in Yosemite

To experience spectacular views at staggering heights, rock climb in California’s Yosemite National Park. What started in 1869 has become a nature lover’s haven and adventure seeker’s paradise. The park offers full-day lessons that allow aspiring climbers to learn the ropes (April-Oct.). Climbing equipment is available for rental. Customized classes are available. (209-372-4386,

3. Kayaking in Maine

Take in the fresh ocean air and kayak in New Harbor, Maine. Maine Kayak offers sea kayaking trips that take you down the rocky Maine coastline and are available as a half-day, full-day or multi-day excursion. Lake kayaking trips are available on two of Maine’s most popular lakes and feature calm waters and picturesque beauty. Upgrade your ocean adventure to take the group on the “Paddle and Puffin” cruise. The Hardy Boat journeys to Easter Egg Island to show groups the only remaining puffin population on the Maine coast. Puffin sighting guaranteed or next ride is free! (866-624-6352,

4. Ziplining in Ohio

Go flying through the treetops as you zipline in Rockbridge, Ohio for the ultimate thrill factor. Hocking Hills Canopy Tours is billed as Ohio’s first world-class zipline adventure and has been named in the “10 Great Ziplines across the USA” by USA Today. Hocking Hills offers three types of zipline adventures: “Canopy Tour,” “Super Zip” and “Night Flight.” The popular “Canopy Tour” is described as “nature lover meets thrill seeker” and includes 10 zipline tracks. To amp up the thrill factor, the “Super Zip” stretches a quarter mile long and allows you to reach 50-mph speeds. Starting from the top of a 75-foot tower, it launches you to go flying through the forest. The “Night Flight” allows you to experience nocturnal life as you soar through darkness on six zipline tracks. Equipment is provided. (740-385-2266,

5.  Whitewater Rafting in West Virginia

Whitewater raft in New River Gorge, West Virginia for a wet and wild adventure. The group can choose its ideal raft style, ranging from tranquil to intense, and difficulty level, ranging from easy to very strenuous, to choose the perfect rafting trip. Class VI-Mountain River has been a leader in the industry for four decades and offers eight trips to choose from. View canyons, mountains and beautiful nature scenes as you take on the raging waters. (304-574-0704,

ski in colorado 6. Skiing in Colorado

For a winter wonderland adventure, ski in Breckenridge, Colorado and enjoy the rustic charm and inviting nature of this mountain town. Breckenridge Ski Resort offers group ski lessons, equipment rentals and lift tickets so the whole group can stay and play together. The ski resort staff accommodates large numbers and presents options such as mountain dining, tours and welcome receptions. If skiing is not for everyone, other activities such as snowboarding, snowmobiling, dog sledding, hot air balloon rides and horseback riding are available. After hitting the slopes, hit the town to enjoy sightseeing, shopping and dining in the largest historic district in Colorado. (800-784-7669,

7.  Zorbing near the Smoky Mountains

Zorb in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee because being rolled down a hill in a giant inflatable globe is a truly unique experience. Zorb Smoky Mountains is the only US Zorb site and has been intriguing adventure-goers since its opening in 2007. Two types of rides are offered: Zorbit and Zydro. The Zorbit ride allows one person to be harnessed in and rolled down a straight-line track while staying dry. The Zydro ride allows up to three people in one water-filled globe to slip and slide down one of three track options—straight, zipper or zig-zag. Only solo Zydro riders can do zig-zag and zipper tracks. (865-428-2422,

8. Hiking in Utah

Hit the trails and hike in Moab, Utah for a breathtaking experience. Arches National Park offers a number of hiking courses allowing visitors to see the many sandstone arches on its grounds. Whether the group wants a brief sample of hiking experience or would rather dive right in, a variety of lengths are offered starting at 10 minutes and going to seven hours. The Island in the Sky District is the most accessible area of Canyonlands National Park and offers half-hour trips to overnight treks down the Colorado River. Both are sure to impress with panoramic views of the park’s beauty. (435-719-2313,

9. Caving at Mammoth Cave National Park

Explore an amazing underground world by caving at Mammoth Cave National Park in Edmonson County, Kentucky. Take a guided tour and marvel at the wondrous geological formations of stalagmites and stalactites while hearing about the history of the world’s longest known cave system. With difficulty levels ranging from easy to strenuous, tours available by season include: Snowball, Frozen Niagara, Star Chamber Historic and more. This World Heritage Site is home to critters such as bats, crickets and eyeless fish. Cave tours are available and vary depending on the season. (270-758-2180,

10. Sandboarding in Oregon

For the enjoyment of snowboarding without the freezing temperatures, sandboard at Sand Master Park in Florence, Oregon. Sandboarding is fairly new to the adventure scene and basically involves sliding down large sand dunes on boards or sleds. Sand Master Park is the world’s first sandboard park and hosts an annual ‘Sand Master Jam’ competition in July. Lessons and rentals are available on site. (541-997-6006)

11. Canoeing in Minnesota

For a refreshing wilderness getaway, canoe Boundary Waters Canoe Area in Ely, Minnesota. Named by National Geographic in the “Top 50 Trips of a Lifetime,” Boundary Waters boasts incredible views for millions of acres. Boundary Waters Outfitters offers diverse canoe trips that can be combined with fishing, camping and exploring for a well-rounded nature journey. Rented canoes take off directly from their docks on the outfitter site. (218-365-3466,

12. Surfing in Hawaii

Ride the ocean waves and surf in Maui, Hawaii. Maui Surf offers a safe environment for groups to learn to surf in one lesson. The lesson consists of beach instruction about the proper surfing technique followed by actual water time and practice. The 75-degree ocean water temperature means wet suits are not required and frigid water temperatures are unheard of in this surfing area. (808-875-4761,

13. Paddleboarding in California

For a new spin on the classic surfing experience, do paddle sports in Santa Barbara, California. A popular form of paddle sports is stand-up paddle surfing, which essentially means you are balancing on a surf board while paddling yourself across the water. Channel Islands Outfitters’ Paddle Sports Center rents stand-up paddle boards by the hour complete with leashes and wetsuits. Lessons are available, and online reservations receive 10% off their rental fee. (805-671-3425,

14. Horseback Riding in Montana

Saddle up and go horseback riding in Whitefish, Montana. At Bar W Guest Ranch riders are properly matched with a horse by the experienced staff and then set off to journey the foothills of the Rockies and open prairie of the Blackfeet Indian Reservation nearby. The lesson starts with a brief orientation and then hits the trail. Other events on the ranch include horsemanship clinics and barrel racing. (406-863-9099,

15. Mmountain biking in Vermontountain Biking in Vermont

Navigate twists and turns while mountain biking in East Burke, Vermont. Voted “best mountain bike trail network in North America” by Bike Magazine, Kingdom Trails is sure to impress all ages. Besides the featured trails for beginners to experienced riders, it is the sheer beauty of the area that keeps visitors coming back. Bikes are available for rental, and day passes to the trails can be purchased for use. (802-626-0737,