Cedar Swan: star-gazing adventurer

YMCA Camp Pine Crest, YWCA Camp Tapawingo alumnus

Drifting on a ship with its engines turned off, all you hear is the crackle and pop of icebergs thousands of years old.

    In journeys to some of the world's remotest or eye-opening places, the quiet moments of reflection and appreciation of the natural world can be the most profound.

    These are the kinds of experiences Cedar Swan hopes travellers take away from tours she leads around the world, from Canada's west and east coasts to the Arctic and Antarctic.

    Swan, 30, is vice president of Adventure Canada, a Toronto-based tour company offering educational adventure trips onboard expedition ships, where travellers learn about geology, biology, arts, culture, anthropology and archaeology from experts - and see their lectures come alive in places such as Nunavut, the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador and the Scottish Isles.

    With just her and a canoe, her special connection with nature began during the silent, star-gazing moments at camp.

    "You have the chance to really appreciate the natural world around you and have those moments where you can just be by yourself and reflect and enjoy and take in what the area around you has to offer," says the Mississauga, Ontario resident. "(Camp) got me interested in the outdoors and got me connected to people who were of like mind."

    As life tends to throw you in unexpected situations, it's important to be confident on your own outside of your comfort zone, which you can learn at camp, Swan says.

    "Having the tools and the confidence to be yourself in those environments and situations is key I think to your success," she explains.

    With the skills and confidence instilled at camp, Swan found a way to share her passion for nature with other adventurers through her job today, which she describes as being like a "summer camp for adults."

    Swan attended YMCA Camp Pine Crest and YWCA Camp Tapawingo. in 2018, she was named as one of Canada's Top 40 under 40.

    Camp Alumni: Cedar Swan from Our Kids Net on Vimeo.

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