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2017 preview: Paul R. Christen High Adventure Base at Summit Bechtel Reserve

high-adventure-week-2It’s the third-annual High-Adventure Week here on Bryan on Scouting. It’s time to celebrate the once-in-a-lifetime experiences offered at the BSA’s four national high-adventure bases — and give you tips on how to secure your spot in 2017, 2018 and beyond.


By now you’ve heard the Summit Bechtel Reserve in West Virginia is hosting the 2017 National Jamboree.

Lesser reported but just as newsworthy is the fact that SBR will offer its high-adventure programs in 2017 as well — albeit in a slightly shorter season.

In other words, the adrenaline-filled fun at the Paul R. Christen National High Adventure Base isn’t taking next summer off. The base will be open four weeks in 2017:

  • June 11 to 17
  • June 18 to 24
  • June 25 to July 1
  • July 2 to 8

haw-2016-paul-r-christen-3After that, the Paul R. Christen base closes for the summer so staff can prepare for the 2017 Jamboree, held July 19 to 28.

There’s still 2017 availability at the Paul R. Christen base. Go here to see more, including details on an early bird discount available through Oct. 31, 2016.

The other big news: The Paul R. Christen base will pilot a new trek in 2017. The New River Trek will include four days of kayaking and one day of whitewater rafting on the beautiful, rugged and legendary New River. This one is expected to fill up quickly, so go here to learn more and register.

What about the summer after next? Details about registration for 2018 will be available soon. As always, your best bet for staying up to speed on all things SBR is to like the Summit Bechtel Reserve Facebook page.

haw-2016-paul-r-christen-4What is the Paul R. Christen base?

It’s the BSA’s fourth and newest high-adventure base. The fun comes in three flavors:

  • Summit Experience: Try all nine activities offered at the Paul R. Christen base.
  • Focused Programs: Become a master at one of these six program areas: The River, The Marksman, Helmets & Harnesses, Ramps & Rails, Berms & Bars and Tires & Trails.
  • Advanced Programs: Get the best-available training and practice in Mountain Biking, Kayaking, Climbing and Photography.

Participants attend the Paul R. Christen base with their crew, but, with the exception of the New River Trek pilot program, each attendee can choose his or her own program area. This is an acknowledgment that not everyone in your troop, team, post, ship or crew has the same interests or abilities.

Two things everyone who attends the Paul R. Christen base gets to do: Complete a service project and ride the 3,100-foot “Big Zip,” the zip line that’s already a legend at SBR.

Other Paul R. Christen news you need

How to register and learn more

Visit the Paul R. Christen National High Adventure Base website or call 304-465-2800.

haw-2016-paul-r-christen-1About SBR’s new photo tradition

Like the iconic photos taken before a Philmont trek, SBR is taking group shots that will become keepsakes for decades to come. See some here.


Thanks to SBR’s David Kopsa and Matt Monroe for the info.

1 Comment on 2017 preview: Paul R. Christen High Adventure Base at Summit Bechtel Reserve

  1. My son went here for one of the OA service weeks this year and loved it!

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