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Q: What do you do when it rains?

Hike, play games, build forts, explore creeks, teach lessons, … basically, the same things we do when the sun is shining. We put on our rain gear and continue our Forest Wild day. We make sure that everyone is wearing appropriate clothing: warm layers, if necessary, and rain jackets/pants or ponchos. We usually stay active to stay warm by playing running games and hiking. If there is lightning or thunderstorms in the area, then we follow our lightning drill protocol.

Q: What do you do if there’s lightning?

We follow lightning drill protocol, which is similar to what we do at Outward Bound: stay low, off ridges, away from wide open spaces, out of water or drainages. We often find a cluster of rhododendrons and spread out into “lightning drill” if the lightning is close by: 2-3 miles or closer. We count the seconds between seeing the lightning and hearing the thunder: every 5 seconds represents about one mile of distance between the storm and us. When it is 3 miles away, we are moving into lightning drill. When it is 2 miles away, we should be in lightning drill position

Q: Are there shelters for the kids?

At our Vilas location we have one small covered pavilion at the drop off/pick up area. Other than that, no, we are in the elements all day with the addition of hanging tarps from trees sometimes. 

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