The adventure is only halfway through, as Western USA Group A reach the mid-program mark in Missoula, MT! Students Eric and Lauren fill us in on what they've been up to in the last couple of weeks!
"We started off our week in Missoula jumping right into some conservation work with our guide, Porter. Our first task was to build stairs into a really steep trail leading up to a local climbing crag, and even though it was cold and a little bit rainy, we were able to warm up with all our hard work! The stairs were a frame of two wood pieces screwed together, and we placed them on the mountainside and supported them with rebar, then filled them with rocks from the trail so people could walk up them. It was really rewarding to see how much we could accomplish in just one day. The next day we went canoeing down a river. We had a rough start at the beginning, with one canoe tipping just 2 minutes after we started paddling, but luckily everyone was okay and just a little wet so we were able to keep going. It was a really beautiful float down the river!
The next day, we went out to a ranch where a ton of mountain lions live. We learned all about mountain lion behavior and watched a ton of videos captured on the wildlife cameras on the ranch showing mountain lions going about their daily lives. We also got to learn some primitive skills, and learned how to make our own rope from a local plant!
After a snowstorm threatened to keep us in Missoula for an unknown amount of time, we left the Missoula campsite a day early for Coeur d'Alene. The drive was quite short so the group had an opportunity to walk around the town and look out onto the beautiful lake! The day after was the perfect time for a relaxation day and the group took full advantage. We all decided what we were going to do to relax, with many of us going into town once more to get restaurant quality food, as well as do some shopping for Coeur d'Alene merchandise! The big activity of that day, however, was an impromptu escape room where the group divided into two pairs and were ushered into one of two escape rooms, which I am happy to say were both completed under the hour time limit!
The next day we decided to go to a park right by the beautiful lake and play basketball and get some exercise while we also planned what we were going to do. The decision landed upon the triple play fun park which was a mini amusement park which had go-karting a ropes course, laser tag, and other amenities of the sort. At the end of the day, with all of the bags packed, we made our way to camp Coeur d'Alene where we had two cabins to share amongst ourselves. Before dinner, though, the group partook in ice skating at a local hockey rink which was loads of fun and a great way to spend the last of our day in Coeur d'Alene. The next day we packed up the bus once more and left for the great state of Washington!" - Eric and Lauren
For more adventures from Western Group A check out their Facebook Album here