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NH students paddle Lake Champlain in a boat they built - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

NH students paddle Lake Champlain in a boat they built

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SWANTON, Vt. -

For the last 10 days, a group of students from Keene, New Hampshire, have rowed more than 100 miles on Lake Champlain in a boat they built themselves.

"Everything in it is really handmade. That can be a little scary when there's like five-foot swells and the boat is bending. So we had one pretty good storm where we all got a little scared there for a second. Thought we were going to flip," said Finn Callihan, a student.

The weather was a challenge, but they finally reached their goal Tuesday after traveling the complete length of the lake. They say it took months to build their boat.

"We've learned different boat building skills, of course. Steam bending and lashing, and we sewed the skin on, and sail making," said Gabriel Andrus, 14. "The skills that I've gained are so abundant and endless. Sailing, rowing."

They started the trek in Whitehall and camped each night along the lake. Their project was organized through a nonprofit called Kroka Expeditions.

"They each have jobs that are pretty well developed from our year together that cover pretty much everything we need. So one of them manages the food, one of them manages all of our energy needs including making fires and making sure that all the firewood is collected," said Laurel Iselin, the lead instructor for Kroka.

The MC2 charter school students will get course credit for the adventure and their instructor hopes they picked up a few life skills along the way.

"Confidence in themselves, teamwork, a work ethic, an ecological ethic, a love for being outdoors and for the things they see are sustaining themselves," Iselin said.

Learning new lessons outside the classroom.

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