First GW TRAiLS – Billy Goat Hike


By itsmaggiegwu

I love the outdoors. Before coming to D.C. I spent a month road tripping the west coast of American and Canada (BC and Alberta). I was in awe and fell deeply in love with the canyons, glaciers, forests and the wildlife that inhabits within. It was a good change coming from nature to the city. I mean, after all, we are all social animals that need human interactions.

Throughout orientation week, our leaders told us that we must join GW TRAiLS, a student engagement organisation that goes on outdoor adventure trips throughout the year. At UNSW, we have student organisations that are similar to TRAiLS (UNSW Outdoors Club and UNSW Adventure Society) but since grass is always greener on the other side, I haven’t had the opportunity to go on any trips with them. So of course I signed up for TRAiLS at the student org fair. I took the plunge and registered for a Billy Goat hike over the weekend and I was not disappointed at all.

I was also surprised to learn that such a beautiful place exists so close to D.C. We took the bus from the Marvin Centre and was there in an hour. Our large group of students were split in two, each group with 2 guides to lead us on the trail. The hike took around 2 hours to complete and it was more difficult than I thought it would be. Imagine a normal trail with flat elevation, now through that image out of your head and replace it with bit and small rocks everywhere. We had to climb up and down and across (pretty much like a goat, hence the name I guess). At the end of it all, we rested at the Great Falls overlook. What a magnificent sight.

Not only was I able to explore the nature surrounding D.C., I also had the pleasure of meeting new people (one of them was a part-time bee keeper at the university which is so interesting!). My next trip? I’m thinking of either spelunking (caving) or maybe even a haunted hike (or both) but there is so much to do and so little time!




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