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Why It Matters: OAHA Testimonial

  Aidan Benefield             OA Today

Why It Matters: OA High Adventure

Order of the Arrow High Adventure is just one of Scouts' many opportunities in the Order of the Arrow. OAHA provides five different experiences to choose from: OA Ocean Adventure at Florida Sea Base, OA Trail Crew at Philmont Scout Ranch, OA Summit Experience at Summit Bechtel Reserve, and OA Canadian Odyssey and OA Wilderness Voyage at Northern Tier.

Order of the Arrow High Adventure is a two-week-long adventure at one of the high adventure bases. The first week involves working at the base on portage trails, backpacking trails, or coral reefs. The second week consists of experiencing the fun activities of the base and surrounding area by hiking, canoeing, and planning treks with your crew. Arrowman Clayton Didier from Yustaga Lodge in Gulf Coast Council had the opportunity to attend OAHA.

“I went to The Summit Bechtel Reserve with the OA. I wanted to do OAHA because it was a more cost-effective and easy way to go to a High Adventure base. There was no waiting around for my troop or waiting for a spot to open in the council. All I had to do was go online and sign up. I feel the unique thing with OAHA was hanging out with Arrowmen from all over the nation. Meeting Scouts from different lodges was a blast and gave me a whole new perspective on what being part of the Order of the Arrow is all about.”

Clayton's crew walking together in fellowship.
Clayton's crew walking the base's roads in fellowship.

OAHA is a great opportunity to go to a high adventure base if you do not have a troop to go with. It is also a much more cost-effective way to go to a high adventure base. Each base varies in price, but to go to The Summit Bechel Reserve for two weeks is only $400 compared to the $1000 to go for the week.    

“A usual day was filled with excitement and service to camp. ‘Service’ days usually start with breakfast before heading out to the worksite for trail maintenance. Tasks included crushing rocks, filling potholes, and fixing trail edges. After a day of hard work, we returned to camp for dinner and some downtime with fellow Arrowmen before calling it a night. ‘Fun’ days were filled with adventure and excitement. We started with breakfast before engaging in thrilling activities such as BMX biking or exploring high rope courses. After an action-packed day, we enjoyed a delicious meal and shared stories around a campfire.”

Clayton's crew working hard together on cleaning up the trail!
Clayton's crew giving service on the trail!

The OAHA experience is broken into two weeks. The first week is working and improving the high adventure base. Each base has different tasks to be completed, but at The Summit, you work on trail maintenance. This gives Scouts a safer and more enjoyable experience when on the trails. The second week is a planned trek by your group. You are then able to experience everything the base has to offer.    

“The memories we made along the way were my favorite part of the trip. To me, the journey's service component was especially noteworthy.  Knowing you're having an actual influence on a high adventure base gives me an amazing sense of satisfaction. The sheer number of people who would gain from the work we were doing was remarkable.  The service also gave us a chance to work together and finish important tasks as a team.”

On the OAHA trips, you are bound to make countless memories, whether through all of the work, the stories being told around the fire, the adventures spent exploring the high adventure base, or whatever may happen along the journey. Whenever you go to a high adventure base through the OA, you are going to leave a positive impact on yourself and those who come after you through the service you do.

“I learned a lot about myself from OAHA. It wasn't easy, and my ability to persevere and work long hours in hot weather said a lot about what the other Arrowmen and I were doing on this trip. Heading to the Summit with OAHA was a game-changer. It was my ticket to high adventure and a chance to give service to the camp. OAHA was the ultimate way to dive into the world of high adventure, and I'm glad I did it.”

Clayton and others relaxing around the campfire.
Clayton and others relaxing around the campfire.

The Order of the Arrow High Adventure program gives amazing opportunities to go and see the high adventure bases from a different aspect. You are allowed to leave a positive impact on the high adventure base for you and others to come. You can sign up for OAHA here at High Adventure | Order of the Arrow, Boy Scouts of America (
We look forward to seeing you and hearing about your experience at OAHA!