Day 12: Here Comes the Sun

Written by Apogee HQ

Not only did we spin the classic Beatles hit of the same name this afternoon, but we also welcomed the actual sun back to Brunswick after several days of clouds and rain. Similarly, our trips all across the globe enjoyed dramatically better weather today than the previous few. As a handful of trips enjoyed their last full day together, today was a bittersweet day for many of our students and leaders, but at least we’ll be able to enjoy one last sunset together.

Cape Cod & the Islands (CI1): The CI crew enjoyed their last full day today in Boston, walking around the Boston Common (making sure to stop at the Make Way For Ducklings statue!). The crew made a lunch stop at Faneuil Hall, once a historic meeting place frequented by our founding fathers – now a modern food court. They also took in the sights and sounds of the lively downtown area, including a live street dance. To top it all off, the group got free slurpees at 7/11 (in celebration of it being 7/11!).



New England Mountains & Coast (NEMC1): It was a perfect day in southern Maine for our NEMCers’ first full day together. This morning they packed up camp and jumped right into their first adventure: a high-low ropes/adventure course. After a morning of team-bonding exercises on the low ropes, Andy and Julia’s gang stepped it up a notch and had the opportunity to try a few high ropes elements. Afterwards, they transitioned to the White Mountains of New Hampshire, where they’ll spend the next four days hiking.NEMC


Caribbean Service Adventure (CSA1): It’s hard to believe, but our CSA-ers are wrapping things up in San Juan tonight before flying home tomorrow. Our amigos spent their last full day exploring gorgeous colonial San Juan and are – as we type – anticipating a delicious meal on the town this evening.CSA


Our Fearless Leaders.

Vermont to Montreal A & B (VM1A&B): Both VM crews had a full day to exploreVieux Montreal and the surrounding area today. They soaked in the European feel and traversed the cobblestone streets of the old city. They visited the Palace du Congress, and enjoyed a leisurely lunch at the street food carts. Poutine will be consumed in large quantities this evening.

VMA posing very cooperatively!

Maine’s Downeast Explorer A (DEX1A): Today this group faced the highest peak in Maine and the epic northern terminus of the Appalachian trail – Mount Katahdin! This is the culmination of the awesome hiking experience they’ve accumulated over the last ten days together. Tonight they’ll sleep soundly and proud of their accomplishments, and tomorrow they’ll head back to the Portland area for some trip-end celebrations. We’ll have pictures from the peak to post tomorrow.

Maine’s Downeast Explorer B (DEX1B): This crew of Downeasters is enjoying their last full day on the water off of Stonington – enjoying camping on an island that they have all to themselves – how magical! Today they paddled around exploring the islands and, while paddling, did community service in the form of island beautification through the Maine Island Trail Association. The group had some beautiful weather today and can’t believe that tomorrow it’s already time to head to Freeport for their final full day together. 


Costa Rica Language & Service (CRLS1): With only two days left to their Costa Rican experience, these all-stars spent their day immersed in adventure. The group was up early and spent the morning ziplining through the rainforest. Emily, Thomas, and their hearty, tanned crew took on the longest zipline in Central America (nearly a mile long!) and then capped off the afternoon with some souvenir shopping through the small town of Manuel Antonio. Their last full day together tomorrow will include a guided tour of the National Park where they hope to see sloths, lizards, and monkeys before heading back towards San Jose. Today’s top picture is from this morning and followed by a series of great shots from their time in the rainforest constructing a new hydroponic garden over the weekend.CRLS


A snapshot of the aquaponic systems referenced in yesterday’s post.




Rainforest buddy.

Coast to Quebec A (CQ1A): Our CQA-ers enjoyed a largely flat 37-mile day of riding under beautiful sunny skies. After two weeks of pounding the pavement, the 37 miles of riding was very manageable for this group of tenacious teens. Tomorrow, they will arrive in Quebec – bon voyage, mes amis!


Coast to Quebec B (CQ1B): Our CQBers were up early today in preparation for their longest ride of the trip so far. After fifteen miles of climbing leading up to the Canadian border, the crew cruised through the largely flat land that lies past the border and towards Quebec City. Tim and Jess’ group is excited to be in Canada, and their excitement is building in preparation for their final, 65-mile challenge day tomorrow. No picture by press time, but we’ll have one tomorrow, for sure!

California Mountains & Coast A (CMC1A): Donning stylish wet suits, the CMCA team hit the waves of Santa Cruz for a morning of surfing. It was a beautiful day to be on the water, and Dave and Isa said that they had an absolute blast learning to properly hang loose. They had the afternoon off today, so were able to relax and explore Santa Cruz, and they’re looking forward to an early bedtime. They’ll be volunteering in the morning before spending the afternoon in San Francisco tomorrow.CMCA

image2 (4)


California Mountains & Coast B (CMC1B): It’s been nearly non-stop action for the last two weeks for Jessi and Nick’s crew, so their leisurely morning today was fully appreciated. It was short-lived, however, and before they knew it, they were back in the action, riding the waves along the coast of Santa Cruz. They had a blast surfing, and afterwards, they moved camp to the gorgeous beaches of Half Moon Bay. Tomorrow, after a morning of service with the Park Rangers, the cherry on top of their trip will be exploring San Francisco.



Montana Service Adventure (MSA1): Today the MSA crew volunteered at the Blackfeet Youth Day on the Blackfeet Reservation. They picked up trash, raked leaves, and fixed benches at a local community center, in addition to meeting a very friendly pup, seen below. Unsurprisingly, they managed to have a great time while lending a hand today.





Northwest Explorer (NWX1): Yet another day in the wilderness for these intrepid hikers! This group is on their third of five evenings in the North Cascades. We can practically smell the wildflowers and picture the snow-capped mountains in the distance! However, our imaginations will have to suffice for today. We’re counting down the days until they emerge from this incredible portion of their trip and quench our thirst for blog photos.

Pacific Coast A (PC1A): After yesterday’s rest day, the group was ready to hop back on the saddle today for their 60-mile ride – moving from the coastal hills in the morning towards the Avenue of the Giants in the afternoon. Everyone was blown away by the beauty of the trees and made sure to take time off of the bikes for some exploration on foot.PCA


Pacific Coast B (PC1B): Our PCB group slept in this morning, enjoyed a pancake breakfast, and then hopped on their bikes for a short ride to their community service project with an organization called Food for People. Food For People is a food pantry that provides food for individuals and families in need in Humboldt County. The group is glad to rest up today before their big 55-mile ride tomorrow into the Redwood Forest.


Scottish Highlands Explorer (SHX1): Matt and Midge’s SuperScots took on Big Ben Nevis this morning – and they found that the highest mountain in the UK was socked in with rain, snow, fog, clouds, and maybe a spaceship or two. So after a “passionate attempt,” they turned around – a decision we fully support! ” They rounded out the day in a much drier tea shop after a picnic in Fort William. They’re back at it tomorrow – strapping on the boots and tackling Stage 1 of the Great Glen Way.



Alps Explorer (AX1): This morning, AX awoke to a steady, 8-mile, 1500 meter climb, the longest ascent of both the TMB and the entire trip. After the challenging mountain pass, they were rewarded with a leisurely descent through the rolling pastures, likely passing flocks of grazing sheep. Their rustic campsite tonight is located across the street from a small goat cheese and jam shop, where the owner walks her goats by each afternoon. It was their last full day in France today, and tomorrow entails another border crossing and an Italian refugio. We eagerly await pictures when they’re back in WiFi-world tomorrow!

Europe Coast to Coast (ECC): The ECC crew had a very solid 75-km ride today, and they felt great coming off of a relaxing rest day in Bruges yesterday. The group rode primarily along old canals and bike paths today as they entered the city of Kluisbergen. Tomorrow: bienvenue en France! 

Though looking into the sun for a photo isn’t the best thing, a European grilled cheese certainly is.
Tim enjoys the European cheese smorgasbord – and we enjoy his sweet mustache.

America Coast to Coast 1 (ACC1): If we had a penny for every mile that ACC1 cycled today, well, we’d have a dollar. Crossing over half of Mississippi in one day, they’re experiencing authentic southern culture. Fortunately, with a few exceptions, today was a mostly flat and downhill ride. ACC1, feel free to add “Century Ride” to your lengthening list of accomplishments. No picture by press time, but all reports are good!

America Coast to Coast 2 (ACC2): To us in the office, and likely to many of our readers, biking 68 miles seems awfully intimidating. But after some of the days that ACC2 has put in so far this trip, they were glad for the “light” miles today and were in to their destination before 2 PM. Now just a handful of miles from the Mississippi border, Lucy and Dixie’s gang has their sites on their fourth state tomorrow.