Our first trip of the year was chock full of different weather, adventure, and great growth. Our trip started off with backpacking and four days of rain! Thankfully the temperatures were warm, but no matter that much rain is a very challenging beginning. The rain turned to snow for a night and the challenge of keep things dry and thawed took up a lot of our energy. While rain is a challenge to work in it is also a wonderful teacher. The group learned very quickly how to take care of their gear, keeping it dry, setting up camp well, and a great appreciation for hot cider and tea.
The Blackwater River in the Florida was calling our names so we headed further south to sand and sun. The scenic river was beautiful and the warmth was a very welcome change! Canoeing allowed us to relax after carrying heavy packs for a week and just enjoy the day and the scenery. There were a couple of close calls with logs in the bottom of the river: one canoe had an almost Titanic-esque calamity but was saved with some quick efforts from the students.
Solo along the river was a great time for rest, thoughts, and personal work. The group reunited after our three days of intense work and celebrated being back together and headed back north for some rock climbing.
Foster Falls welcomed the group after a long van ride and there was the friendliest stray cat in the world to greet us! Rock climbing was a brand new challenge for the group but they rose to the challenge. The rocks were wet and cold but the students worked hard and pushed themselves to their limits.
Our trip wrapped up with a special family weekend where not only were families brought back together but families supported each other and started seeing some fruits to all of their labors.
Thank you to everyone who was part of this trip and making it a memorable one!