Hakusanroku Journal 白山麓ジャーナル

August 2 2022, Senami River Adventure with the Nature & Adventure Club

 Hello this is Philip Cadzow, one of the Physical Education teachers.

 The nature and adventure club held a river climbing activity in the Senami river on July 16th. I explored the Senami river two weeks before the club activity was going to be held to get a feel for the water levels, and things seemed to be looking safe. Although the water level was a little low, officially the rainy season was announced to have ended, and we hadn't had much rain but in the following weeks it was looking like there was going to be plenty of rain. So it wasn't certain that it would be safe until the day of the trip.

 The day of the trip arrived and it looked like there would be a small shower in the afternoon and the water level had risen a fair amount, but nothing too serious. We set off from Hakusanroku campus at 9am with the plan to walk down the road, and climb/swim up the river to have some lunch by the cars. Then walk to the Senami campground 1.5km away and float down the river back to the cars. If it started to get too rainy or students were slow in climbing the river then we would finish at lunch.
 With the plan set we slipped our way down a muddy river bank using a hand-rope and then set off up the cold river. Immediately upon entering the water was up to our waists and very cold. The water was a beautiful clear green and blue, and the stones were slippery underfoot. We set off at a pace that was double what I was expecting from the previous year, the 10 club members, Yamazaki sensei, and I raced passed boulders, taking the more exciting path of trying to climb all the small rapids that were torrents of white bubbles and very loud for their sizes. it was great fun and it was fantastic to be outside. The last obstacle just before the halfway point, after an hour of racing up the river, was a rock sitting in the middle of the river with water pouring over either side of it, and leading into a green pool that you couldn't see or feel the bottom in. Swimming through the pool you had to stay in the center as the sides carried the swift current and you had to approach the rock head-on. Climbing the rock was the only way though and just a little further upstream there was a safe island in the sunlight. One by one the students would enter the pool and I would throw a rope and pull them to the rock for them to climb. Sometimes it would take several throws to get the rope into the students waving hands which reminded me a lot of throwing hoops onto rings at carnival games. (Picture:11) Life-jackets kept everyone safe and we were out having lunch in the sunlight much earlier than I had expected.
 After a quick food break we wandered up the road to the campsite, warming up in the process, and then found a beautiful swimming hole that I and pushed a few unsuspecting students into. I jumped in afterwards attempting a flip and didn't quite get all the way around - slapping the water with my back which was punishment for pushing the students from the universe.
 We started out very relaxed from the pool, just floating down the river, and even finding some natural water slides. We also discovered some small waterfalls, felt excitement in getting washed down some rapids, and walked around anything too dangerous. It got cold quickly being constantly in the water, and after another hour of floating and walking downstream we reached the cars just as students started to get properly cold.

 It was a wonderful day that encapsulated bring part of the Nature and Adventure Club. Wonderful nature with it's beauty and fresh air, and exciting (sometimes risky) adventure that pushes what you think you can achieve.

Philip Cadzow





HOMECampus LifeHakusanroku JournalAugust 2 2022, Senami River Adventure with the Nature & Adventure Club