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Relax. Enjoy Your Cabin in the Woods.

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You so deserve this.


Verb: The act of relaxing in a cozy cabin in the woods.

The New River Gorge National Park

Our back yard


Gorgeous weddings in The New River Gorge

Family Hike

Making memories.

Bucket List: You Can Do it All Here in the New River Gorge

I took a quick look at all the fun stuff we did during our reunion. Here’s what I realized:

  • Some of the people in the group will never need to make a bucket list because they have done any and everything that pops up.
  • Others have slayed dragons so large and scary most of us could not comprehend them.
  • Others overcame fears that paralyzed them for years.

Your reunions may not be like this; however it sure makes for great dinner table conversation.

And so we begin the story of stuff our family did during our famial”ish” reunion. 

The New River Gorge area became famous for white water rafting 30 some years ago, and it is still the mainstay of high adventure activities in the area. That said, we are just as famous for rock climbing. Mountain biking is growing in stature and recognition. Several ziplines have popped up in the past few years. You can skydive here and roll down a hill in a ball. Golf is all around us. Smallmouth bass fishing is world class. I am sure I am missing something, so let’s tell the story and see if we find it.

Dutch, who is one of the “ish” parts of the famial”ish” reunion, had actually made a bucket list. He has been tweaking it since retiring a few years back.

Dutch put  4 check marks on his bucket list in 5 days.

  • Zipline
  • White Water Rafting
  • Bridge Walk

He also golfed, visited historic sites, and was all-around up for anything, including passing initiation into the clan. He is welcome to come back.

Check out the landing gear!

Even more impressive, Aunt Chrissie checked one off her list. A Giant one.  She is absolutely terrified of water. Like, won’t do dishes except in the dishwasher terrified! YES, she went Rafting! 

Aunt Chrissi (on left) and Aunt Gay Gay with the littles.

I would not say she relaxed but she did calm down enough to look around take some pictures and really enjoy herself. I doubt she will ever do it again. And that is not the point; she did something so huge so scary and so far out of her comfort zone that she may never find her way back. And for that she should be very pleased and proud.

Yes, others slayed some dragons too. My Mom took a Biplane ride and did a Barrel Roll. Several folks with a fear of heights got up in the trees and had a blast on the zip line or went on the Bridge Walk.

Surprise! My Dad ambushed my Mom and son with a Bi-Plane ride. What a great idea and the both loved it.

Some people had just never had the opportunity to do some of the many adventures we have here. My little brother got to hop on a horse’s back for the first time and go for a ride.

Lots of people even did two different activities in one day. Rafting first thing in the morning gets you back about 2 or 3 PM, leaving plenty of time to get in nine holes or take a hike or bike ride or rappel or heaven forbid just kick back and relax. For some of us everything was new and different.

How cool is that?

It is not about how scared you are of the activity or how dangerous or expensive it is; instead it’s being open to a “NEW” experience, stepping out of your normal routine and trying something. Even if you don’t end up loving it, you will have something to talk about at dinner (and will have attained new heights in your mind’s eye and everyone else’s too).

We are here to help you slay some dragons! Big or small, let us help.

What did you cross off your bucket list when you visited the New River Gorge?


  • Rachel says:

    I’m so proud of my mama, you have no idea! Way to go, “Aunt Chrissi”!

  • Best memories of the summer were made OCR with our family!

  • Chrissi says:

    Thanks, Rachel. And Geoffrey, without you to “hold my hand” I know I NEVER would have done it! I am thankful for your calm instruction and reassurance! I probably would let you take me on the river again, sometime…maybe! Love you and love your retreat!!

  • Kari Heeter Clark says:

    Wow that made me cry.

  • Jan Murphy (Gay Gay) says:

    I was so impressed when GJ separated all 6 little kids
    from their parents or grandparents and paddled them
    out into the middle of the river to give them a calm safety talk. GJ had them sit and stand up and jump to
    familiarize with the feel of the raft and being in the river.
    It only took the kids a few minutes in the raft and they
    were moving to the front – hanging onto the rope and
    laughing while going through the rapids. We all would have loved to have Kyle and Geoff take us out for another 3 hours. Only Stephanie, Soriya and Alissa got to take the second trip.

    Even with 8 days for some of us – there still isn’t enough time to talk to everyone.

    Love to all.

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