The SLAQ Summer Faith Adventure is an opportunity for the next generation to discover life as part of God’s “sacred story” through Real-Life: Adventure, Community, and Story.
As an intro to the Faith Adventure Stage 1 SLAQers (open to rising 8th graders and older) will peddle and paddle over 100 miles, through Big Savage Tunnel, across the Mason Dixon line, over the Continental divide, and along the Casselman & Yough rivers as a part of a real-Life bike packing adventure on the Great Allegheny Passage (Gap Trail). All with the support of the SLAQ Wagon hauling their camping gear & providing their food.
SLAQers ready for stage 2, will complete 140 miles of the Gap trail, sharing the same journey as the “Campers” but extending their adventure for an extra day. Unlike “Campers” Packers must make their journey while packing their own gear on their bike along the way. Meals will continue to be provided by the SLAQ Support Crew.
Stage 3 of the faith adventure is when SLAQers really begin to take on more personal responsibility as they continue beyond the Gap Trail, and venture out for an extra 3 days/100 miles on the C&O Canal. All while packing their own gear and food without the support of the SLAQ Wagon, and being entrusted to develop their own communal practices. This 9 day epic adventure which totals 250 miles of Bike-packing is by invitation only for those SLAQers who have completed the previous two stages of the Faith Adventure.
Individual youth (over 17 years of age) that have completed all three stages of the SLAQ Adventure, have the support of their family and community, and have shown the maturity and resiliency necessary, will be invited to participate in a SLAQ supported rite of passage. Each rite of passage will be tailored to the specific youth, and incorporate the support of their family & community. While a given rite of passage may or may not correspond with the typical “Faith Adventure,” week the experience will be unique in requiring greater levels of maturity and independence as the youth develops and determines their own itinerary.
Bike packing as it’s name implies requires a significant amount of gear. However, much of what you need you already have, and much of what you don’t have is affordable. And if you can’t access all your own gear let us know, we have many items that can be borrowed.
Every SLAQ Adventure costs participants $350 ($300 for additional family members) and includes guide fees, rentals, camping, & food. Scholarships available for youth from diverse cultural backgrounds and/or those living under the poverty level.
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Get a little glimpse into what a SLAQ Faith Adventure looks like via our highlight video from 2020