Greetings from the National Parks of Grand Teton and Yellowstone! We’ve done so much since our touchdown in the Jackson airport, it’s hard to believe we’re only getting started!
During our orientation day we explored the Moose Visitor Center and were dazzled by its high quality exhibits and wonderful architecture. In its auditorium we watched a wonderful featurette that primed us for our voyage into the intense surrounding landscape. Then we set off towards Yellowstone. On the way we stopped by Jackson Lake for a warm picnic lunch on its sand edge. Passing into Yellowstone we were able to wave to a herd of bison.
Waking up early we all were excited to begin exploring the unique and bizarre geothermal features of the park. Top on everyone’s list was the Grand Prismatic Spring and of course Old Faithful Geyser.
After an afternoon preparing for our kayak expedition, we woke up before the sun could catch us and rode down to the launching point with kayaks in tow. After a briefing, we took off onto the smooth and serene Yellowstone Lake. The water was so quiet we could see our own reflections before the surrounding forest embankments. Our trip proved long and strenuous, but by the time we reached our deeply nestled campsite, we were rewarded by blue skies and plenty of available firewood. Because we had arose so early we had plenty of time to pitch our tents, play games, relax, and tell stories, before the crisp Yellowstone night approached.
The next day we enjoyed a bit of time sleeping in, and a yummy oatmeal breakfast. We then secured our camp and launched out again onto the lake. After an enjoyable paddle we found a cool little sand bar where we were able to beach our boats and eat lunch. We hung around a bit, soaking in the rays and each other’s company. Here, we played a ton of get-to-know-each-other games which furthered our group bonds. We kayaked back, singing towards our campsite.
Today we awoke bright and early once again to conclude our awesome kayak adventure. We took long glides across the lake to reach our put-out point and saw several bald eagles along the way! The wildlife didn’t retreat however, for upon reaching our van trailer, we were greeted by a curious elk!
Our group is proving to be a tight knit family of friends, and each participant plays a vital role.
Stephen is a kind and compassionate leader who does not hesitate to step in when help is needed. Not only is he enthusiastic about assisting fellow campers but often the counselors as well. He is consistently optimistic, bringing the group vivacity and happiness. We are excited to see Stephen’s initiative in our upcoming activities.
Nick has a great sense of humor that the whole group can appreciate. Often times we find him cracking witty puns and jokes that spread laughter contagiously. He has adapted well to a wilderness lifestyle, and proves to be adventurous wherever we go. There is sure to be plenty of stuff for Nick to dig his hands into in the upcoming week.
Louise has a peaceful spirit that puts others at ease. She brings a constructive influence, especially during meal preparation, and her inputs are mindful and well thought out. She has a healthy curiosity about the environment and the wildlife within it, and never fails to ask meaningful questions. There is plenty of more insight for Louise to gain looking forward.
Will is a child of the sun, always enthusiastic, energetic, and eager in everything we do. His active presence brings a lively exuberance to things that other can pick up on. Will is a kindhearted individual that has a clear respect and appreciation for wildlife, and we are very pleased to have him along.
Hanson is a sly joker whose quips everyone can appreciate. He is always keeping things interesting with witty remarks and funny references. Everyone seems to take to Hanson’s subtle humor. On the water Hanson is seen smiling and having fun; at camp he is seen encouraging others. We’re excited to see Hanson strive during our rock climbing portion.
Kevin has proven his expert outdoors skills and knowledge , especially during our backcountry portion. Kevin is quite familiar with camping techniques and doesn’t hesitate to teach others. His aptness in the wilderness enables him to be a effective leader, one which everybody can rely on.
Sam has shown confidence since day one—confidence in himself and confidence in others. He is never ashamed to say what he’s thinking, and usually that’s something extremely funny and entertaining. Everyone can appreciate Sam’s presence because it’s so natural and free flowing, and because of that drive the group is brought closer together.
Adam brings positive energy in everything he does. We can tell that he is genuinely sympathetic and caring of other people. In camp Adam is found making sure that others are feeling happy and secure. His positive attitude brings optimism to the group, and he has made friends with every person
Jordan has adapted very well to a camper’s lifestyle. He is enthusiastic about camp life and never has an issue with the challenges it may bring. His calm and collected nature brings reassurance to others in the group and allows them to relax in a wilderness setting. We can tell Jordan is going to excel in the activities ahead.
Anita’s empowering vibrancy couldn’t be more apparent. She has brought 110% energy since day one. During our activities she is heard singing songs and encouraging others. At camp she is engaged in our group activities and games whilst keeping a positive and uplifting attitude. Anita is such a strong motivator and we are excited to see how she shines in the upcoming week.
Tate has done extremely well in all of our activities, inspiring others to do the same. While kayaking he was a clear pace-setter and offered words of encouragement to those behind. In camp Tate kept the camp morale high while assisting in both meal preparation and fire maintenance. We suspect Tate will excel in the next portion of the trip.
Kate is a wholesome member of our group. Never does she hesitate to step into a leadership role, assisting campers and leaders alike. She has shown a genuine character, positive attitude, and ambition in our activities. And on top of all of that she always keeps an open mind. Kate is sure to lead the group towards great success in the upcoming week.
Duncan has been very personable from day one, engaging everyone in light-hearted conversation. His presence is smooth and easy, making others feel comfortable around him. He has also shown a pleasing curiosity towards her surroundings, never missing a moment to observe and absorb the unique phenomena of the environment.
Cameron is a lively individual who never lets an opportunity for laughter and humor to pass. During our activities and our down time at camp, he is constantly cracking everybody up with his bursting statements and situational humor. Cameron brings an easygoing presence to the group that everybody clearly appreciates.
We are very grateful for the experiences we have had, and look forward to those to come. The group is already working together with great fellowship, and we can’t wait to see where it leads us in these great and fascinating destinations.