Thoughts on the Bangor Y outdoor club

In case you don’t visit the fantastic BDN outdoor webpage regularly (which I highly suggest) and didn’t see my story on the new Bangor Y Outdoor Adventure Club, here is a link.

This club is kicking off on Sunday, Feb. 12. If you want to be a part of the club from the get-go, register by Wednesday, Feb. 8.

They’re starting with two programs/tracks.

(I want to use the word “subclub,” but when I looked up the definition for that word, I got: “A group of people that frequent the subway 4-5 times a week and know the poeple that work there on a first name basis.” I also got: “An underground music club in Bratislava, Slovakia.” And none of those things are happening at the Y.)

These two programs are on rock climbing and kayaking/canoeing.

Since it’s winter, they’ll be starting indoors at the Maine Bound climbing wall in Orono and the Y swimming pools, a perfect place to learn kayak rolling and paddle techniques.

I’ve always wanted to learn how to rock climb. I have friends who climb. But I look at all the different kinds of ropes and knots and cams and carabiners and I think, ‘That looks complicated.’ I don’t have the time. I don’t have the money. I might kill myself, because I don’t have the knowledge.

That’s why I think this club is great. They’ll have the equipment and experts there for you.

It’s the same thing with paddling. I’ve paddles a kayak and canoe in quiet water and rafted down some white water, but I have yet to learn a kayak roll. That’s not something you just teach yourself. It’s also not something you’d typically do in an Old Town Loon open-cockpit kayak, which is what I have.

The club paddling program seems like it’ll be a great way to learn a few things — the right way.

Since the Y is right down the road from the Bangor Daily News, I’m pretty excited. I can’t wait to see how this club will evolve — and they do plan to expand to other outdoor sports. Club leaders will be paying close attention to what people want, so feel free to offer up your opinion.

For now, the club is for ages 11 and up, but that might change. For information, go to the BDN story or call 941-2808.

Aislinn Sarnacki

About Aislinn Sarnacki

Aislinn is a Bangor Daily News reporter for the Outdoors pages, focusing on outdoor recreation and Maine wildlife. Visit her main blog at