Our first day as a group was a beautiful sunny day spent exploring the string lake trail in Grand Teton National Park. We slept in a bit to let people recover from the previous day of traveling and at a delicious pancake breakfast before heading off to find Hidden Falls, a beautiful waterfall next to string lake. Brandon was amazed at the beautiful view of the lake from our trail and snapped endless pictures. Once we returned to the campsite the boys were eager to plan their meals for the upcoming sea kayaking trip. Zach was especially excited to choose something special for his birthday, and everyone came up with a tasty menu for our trip. That night, Sho showed off his cooking skills by taking the lead in his cook crew on a great stir fry.
Tuesday was spent preparing everyone for sea kayaking. We bought food for all of our meals and then relaxed in one of Jackson’s parks for lunch before finally entering Yellowstone to meet up with our sea kayak specialist, John. Ben was ecstatic to finally be getting into the park to hopefully see some wildlife (crikey, what a beaut!). Finn was particularly keen on the bison and could not wait to get his eyes on the huge animals. With John’s help we got all of our gear ready for our trip and settled down for an early night.
We woke up bright and early on Wednesday in order to get on Lewis Lake before the wind picked up. Our sleepy crew piled into the van for a short drive to our put in location. Jack couldn’t wait to have his first back country experience, so we hurried to pack the boats and get out on the lake. Shortly after beginning our paddle Will spotted two bald eagles sitting in a tree, and we managed to paddle right up to the tree they were in. Henry spotted two playful otters splashing in the water shortly thereafter. Once we crossed Lewis lake we hopped out of our boats and Carl enthusiastically led the way pulling all of our kayaks up a river that we couldn’t paddle up. The river led to Shoshone lake, where we set up camp overlooking the water, everyone feeling happy to be in the backcountry for a bit.
Thursday was another early morning, as the group had decided the night before that they wanted to explore the nearby geyser basin. Henry was intrigued by the bubbling hot water and was always first to suggest we explore a new place; while Ben was eager to educate the others with his geyser knowledge. With the wind at our backs we formed a raft with our kayaks and took our time floating back to camp. Exhausted but satisfied with the day, the boys cooked dinner, pizza flavored pasta, before crawling into the tents.
Thursday’s trip back went especially well. Practically pros at backcountry living, the group was quick and efficient to pack up tents and get going on the lake. We made great time and, ready for a hot shower and clean clothes, it was all hands on deck for gear cleanup.
Having spent the last few days enjoying a break from civilization, the group is ready ad excited to zip line and white water raft tomorrow.