This past summer from August 5 – 14, I was fortunate to participate in the Mount Union’s wilderness trip in the Adirondack High Peaks in New York. For some course credit, myself and about 20 other students went to the woods to discuss environmental ethics and to lead a rather simple life for a week.
“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.” – Thoreau
My smaller group of eight was given the name of “Team Donut” when we decided to make a rest stop at Dunkin’ Donuts rather than McDonald’s. We quickly embraced this name, and we referenced the hilarious video of former Cleveland Cavalier Delonte West. With our team motto being “I don’t care if you gotta fly…planes, trains, and automobiles you better have my donuts,” we adopted some crafty nicknames like R-Nut, K-Sprinkle and D-Hole.
Aside from having too much fun, laughing most of the day and engaging in unforgettable conversations, we had a pretty eventful trip. Our group was fortunate to hike through Cold Brook Pass, which is a stretch of trail that few hikers pass through because of its tough terrain. We also made it to the summit of Mt. Haystack and Mt. Marcy, the highest point in the state of New York. We hiked a total of about 40 miles on the whole trip, 10.1 being our longest day when making both summits. It is crazy to think that people hiking the Appalachian Trail average about 20 to 25 miles a day hiking! We also had some great nights while staying in lean-tos at Bushnell Falls and Lake Colden. Awesome views!
“Take nothing but memories, kill nothing but time, leave nothing but footprints.”
What made our trip even more exciting was that we got to rock climb, repel, swim, visit Lake Placid and Inlet and some of us paid to go on a half hour charter plane ride. While flying out of Long Lake, we were able to see the mountains we climbed and Vermont ranges in the distance, which made for incredible views. I hope you enjoy some of my favorite pictures because words can simply not describe this wonderful experience.
Right when I got back to school, I read an article about A Semester in the Woods from St. Lawrence University. The program is about “Students who swap cell phones and indoor plumbing for handwritten letters and a composting toilets.” This doesn’t sound like too much fun to many, but you should definitely read the article.
Through this wilderness trip, I was able to meet and create everlasting relationships at Mount with people I thought I never would have. This is just another way to get involved on campus and a great way to meet new people.
Someone take me back to the mountains!