Day 29: Whimsical Words and Wonders

By Willard Thomas Vietze

Despite some dreary weather, today was a particularly fun day in the office. Several leaders are back in Brunswick and have many a tale to tell and photo to share. While we love seeing what everybody is doing in the field, it’s always great to hear about our trips straight from the horse’s mouth (so to speak).

Unfortunately, I once again must leave the blog to answer my life’s calling- leading Maine Coast Junior. I don’t know when I’ll be back again, but I will surely miss you, pals. Today was a whimsical day in the Apogee world- mindbogglingly blue waters, snow-capped, craggy peaks pulled straight from the pages of Dr. Seuss, slides, Apoges, aliens, dancing whales, zip-lining sloths, heart-melting Italian poetry, pasta, all tweed everything, Herman Melville, the set of Mrs. Doubtfire, and so much more. Gadzooks!


New England Mountains & Coast (NEMC)

The NEMC team had a totally tubular transit day and headed to the Forks. Full of resting, resupplying, and fun! We’re excited to see the adventures they take on tomorrow now that they’ve moved to a new spot…

Only this crew can make laundry look fun!

Colorado’s Rocky Mountains (CRM)

The Coloradans stood with mouths agape before the epic views from Alpine Ridge Visitors center and along the wondrous Ute Trail. They are madly in love with Colorado’s state flag and may not return home. Sounds rad!

Trivia: What does each component of Colorado’s flag symbolize?
Painfully chill
Trivia: What two states have a color in their name?

Caribbean Service Adventure (CSA)

CSA wrapped up their trip with a bittersweet sendoff in the San Juan airport after two glorious weeks together. Word is: Matthew Firestone has a lot of fans in the group (inside joke alert). Hasta luego, chicos!

Maine Coast College Essay (MCCE)

Our essayists took to the sea to explore the depths of their minds and find inspiration in seaweed, seals, and aquatic vessels. They had some well-deserved time away from writing and enjoyed riding the waves! Word is: Jack brought out his prosthetic Ahab beard and spoke in elegant prose throughout the journey.

In varying states of readiness
Not pictured: Beautiful topic sentences
“Consider the subtleness of the sea; how its most dreaded creatures glide under water, unapparent for the most part, and treacherously hidden beneath the loveliest tints of azure” – Yung Herman Melville

Maine’s Downeast Explorer (DEXA)

DEX Apple made the long haul to Freeport from Baxter State Park after a wondrous jaunt through the backcountry and up Katahdin. Tonight their plan was to hit the town (Portland) and eat their weight in pizza. And, we finally got their pictures from Katahdin!

Where is Ezra’s face? Sith Lord or Ezra?
What a group of goofy goobers! Pikachu!
What a view….of Clarke’s lovely face

Maine’s Downeast Explorer (DEXB)

DEXB left their bona fide Atlantis (AKA Isle Au Haut Bay) for Freeport to enjoy a final meal and share the week’s myriad tales. Austin utilized his prodigious photography skills to capture the week in all its glory. Stay tuned for the album in its entirety!

Ice cream in the foreground – happy kiddos in the background!

Costa Rica Language & Service (CRLS)

CRLS took to the canopies today by zip-line. After moving at the speed of sloths yesterday, the zip-lines were a real rush! An exciting way to see the flora and fauna from a whole new angle…

Can you spot Connor?
Literally pura vida
Safety first (per usual)

California Mountains & Coast (CMCA)

CMCA helped restore Half Moon Bay’s wild dunes with State Park Rangers before heading into San Francisco (of Full House fame). They’ve already begun to say things like “far out” and “most excellent” after mere hours in the city. Happy celebrations!

California Mountains & Coast (CMCB)

CMCB also lent some helping hands to Half Moon Bay’s park rangers, vowing to protect the waves they so cherished yesterday. The group took a lovely stroll through San Francisco’s hilly streets and enjoyed a scrumptious final meal!

Montana Service Adventure (MSA)

MSA rode into Helena after finding a particularly decrepit boat by the roadside. Nobody knows how they did it, but they set a new land yachting record. After their boat cruise, they enjoyed a siesta and a massive game of Contact at the campground. Another stellar day!

Land ho!
That’s a pretty big sky

Northwest Explorer (NWXA)

NWXA is headed into the backcountry to marvel at moss and mountains in Olympic National Park. While there are copious moody vistas in the backcountry, there is no cell service. Stay tuned for mind blowing photos in mere days!

Northwest Explorer (NWXB)

NWX Bald Eagle took to the Sauk River’s whitewater by raft today. This group really Lewis and Clarked their way down the river with great enthusiasm. Most excellent! It was a “killer float down the Sauk” from what we’ve heard!

I Spy an Elephant!
Can you spot the elephant?

Pacific Coast (PCA)

PCA rolled down to Humbug Beach to scowl and yell at innocent bystanders (jokes, folks – get it?). They had a grand time on some of the most quintessential coastal roads one could imagine. After lunch, they spotted a majestic whale dancing in the sea.

A little too serious for me
Ah, that’s the ticket
Post whale sighting

Pacific Coast (PCB)

The PCB crew rolled into camp before noon after dueling the Seven Devils, a series of crafty and formidable hills. Rumor has it: the gang reenacted several pivotal scenes from beloved film The Goonies. While we know they made it to camp before noon and then had some sweet chill time at the beach – unfortunately the photos didn’t want to come through!

Scottish Highland Explorer (SHX)

Our highlanders had yet another delightful day of frolicking among emerald hills and lochs. Sam and Max have William Wallace’s pivotal pump-up speech down to a t. Stay tuned for video footage!

Out for a wee stroll
Overheard: I really wish I had my bagpipe right now
Our fearless leaders sans kilts

Alps Explorer (AXA)

The AXA squad made their way to Fiesch by Switzerland’s scenic railway. They spent the afternoon enjoying the splendor of a particularly slick slide. Prost to that!

I imagine they just completed a stunning rendition of “So long, farewell” before this photo was taken

Alps Explorer (AXB)

AXB rode to Martigny to rest and resupply for the iconic Tour du Mont Blanc. Today’s Apoge: a rousing game of minigolf. Stay tuned for Nick and Jessi’s EDM remix of “Doe, a Deer.”

Can you read it? I sure can!
Speaking the universal language of minigolf

Europe Coast to Coast (ECCA)

ECCA enjoyed their much deserved day of exploration and celebration in Venezia! Rumor has it: Red has turned in his eccentric cycling jerseys and will begin his career as a gondolier on Venice’s oft overlooked canals.

Literally can’t believe they’re standing right now
If you look really closely, you can spot a canal behind them
There’s Alyssa!
Stay tuned for Apogee’s Canal Explorer next summer!

Europe Coast to Coast (ECCB)

After riding 105 miles yesterday to reach Venice, ECCB frolicked and meandered the aquatic avenues of the canal city in celebration! They finished the day with handmade pasta a la Mario Batali (just joking).

Woah! Since when were there canals in Venice?
I spy a canal!
This is probably a historically significant location, but where’s Becca?
There she is! And a canal!
Woah, almost didn’t see that canal there!
Literally crazy for gelato
Buen Apetito!

America Coast to Coast (ACC1)

ACC1 had a restful day in Socorro New Mexico, today. Fun fact: Conrad Hilton, grandfather of beloved Paris Hilton (and founder of Hilton Hotels), spent his formative years in Socorro. Wow!

Looks very restful!

America Coast to Coast (ACC2)

ACC2 left Roswell after a strange abduction yesterday. They are still mildly spooked, but crushed their miles to Carrizozo nonetheless. They are ready for more straaange days in the desert!

Is that Alien Steve in the front?