Written by the combined effort of Michael, Izzy, Jack, Hannah & Kevin.
Folks, it’s hard to believe but our last trips finish a week from tomorrow. How can this be? Where has the summer gone? But enough pondering. Let’s get to the trips.
Maine Coast College Essay (MCCE3): It was a quintessential “Maine” day for our essay writers! They spent the morning picking blueberries, competing as to who could find the biggest berry. After a morning in the fields, the crew headed back to the cabins to get some writing sessions in with Jed and work on their own drafts.
Cape Cod & the Islands (CI3): Our CI advanced up the Cape today with a manageable 13 miles of riding. Making good time, the crew had an opportunity to play a much-deserved round of mini-golf. Though we haven’t yet received information on who will be taking home the Green Jacket, we do know the group is very much looking forward to their day of surfing tomorrow.
New England Mountains & Coast (NEMC3): The NEMC group had a big day today – transitioning from the coast to the White Mountains. But they spent this morning on a ropes course having a ton of fun. The crew is now cozy in their beautiful camp and is excited to set out into the wilderness tomorrow for their first hike of the trip.
Caribbean Service Adventure (CSA3): After rainstorms all day yesterday, the sun finally came out, and our CSA-ers took full advantage of the great weather. After a few hours of service work at the Cabo Rojo Wildlife Refuge, the group enjoyed a well-deserved day at one of the most beautiful beaches in Puerto Rico. The group hiked up to the Cabo Rojo Lighthouse, snapped a few pics, and then dove into an afternoon of white beaches and clear blue waters (sigh…).
Vermont to Montreal A (VMA3): The VMA crew enjoyed beautiful weather today as they made their ferry crossing onto Grand Isle. Though there were no sightings of Champy, the famous (or infamous) Lake Champlain sea monster, the group is in high spirits as they anticipate crossing into Canada tomorrow.
Vermont to Montreal B (VMB3): The VMB group had a great day of community service volunteering with the Burlington Parks and Rec department painting fences. The gang even had enough time and energy left to go for a swim and then visit downtown Burlington. The crew visited the classic UVM hangout, Church Street, stopping at the many shops before hitting Ben and Jerrys. Here, they took on perhaps their biggest challenge of the trip, eating a Vermonster (twenty scoops of ice cream in one giant bowl).
Maine’s Downeast Explorer A (DEX3): Today our Downeasters are swapping water shoes for hiking boots, paddles for packs, and waves for trails! They are heading to Acadia National Park – originally established as the Sieur de Monts National Monument in 1916 by President Woodrow Wilson. Today, Acadia encompasses over 45,000 acres of land, inviting our DEX crew to explore what the park has to offer over the next three days through a variety of hikes and adventures.
Costa Rica Language & Service (CRLS3): The group boogied the night away last night at their salsa dancing lesson, and woke up this morning with the energy (and possibly the dance moves) to move and groove into their final morning of Spanish classes. In a matter of four days, they’ve been able to learn so much, and put their new skills to good use. They spent the afternoon at a local children’s home, working on their Espanol, and are looking forward to a gorgeous day of white water rafting tomorrow!
Coast to Quebec A (CQ2A): The CQA-ers completed one of the hilliest rides of the trip today, finally landing at their beautiful campground on Moosehead Lake where they will stay for the next two nights. The group is excited for their rest day tomorrow where they will pile into rafts and brave the white water of the Kennebec River.
Coast to Quebec B (CQ2B): CQB got an early start this morning as they continued further into the heart of Maine. The group is benefiting from the generosity of the church they are staying at tonight — upon arriving they were gifted a smorgasbord of food: homemade whoopie pies, cookies, watermelon, hot dogs, and pizza.
California Mountains & Coast A (CMC3A): Our CMCA-ers enjoyed their hike around Big Tree State Park today — their last hike before they venture into the Yosemite backcountry in a couple days with fully weighted packs. The group got acquainted to hiking with some weight and went over the basics of safe hiking as they anticipate their backcountry stint in Yosemite.
California Mountains & Coast B (CMC3B): The CMCB group is in the backcountry in Yosemite with a rare but much-welcomed spot of cell service. The crew hiked down to the top of Yosemite falls, approaching it from a unique vantage point (the vast majority of visitors approach it from the bottom and look up at it). Finally, the gang had lunch with the dramatic view of Half Dome as their backdrop.
Montana Service Adventure (MSA2): Welcome to Glacier National Park! After a gorgeous ride into the Park yesterday, the group was excited to have a day off of the bikes and spend some time with the rangers doing service work. Their service project consisted of painting benches in the park so patrons can enjoy the beautiful views from a beautifully painted bench 😉 This afternoon the crew went hiking to explore some glacial waterfalls.
Northwest Explorer (NWX2): Alas, yet again we go pictureless from our Northwest Explorers! Their gain is our loss, as they continue to enjoy the remote wilderness of the North Cascades. But, hark – they will return to civilization tomorrow! We are drooling at the prospect of their snow-capped, wild-flower filled photos to come.
Pacific Coast A (PC2A): Rolling, rolling, rolling. Keep those tires rolling. And rolling all the way up Leggett Hill they did – the highest climb along the Pacific Coast between Canada and Mexico! They rode up 1,100 feet over 5 miles and completed their mileage to make it all the way into the beautiful coastal town of Mendocino. After a few solid days on the road, they’re very much looking forward to a rest day tomorrow.
Pacific Coast B (PC2B): Our PCB-ers said goodbye to the “Avenue of the Giants” and started their journey back out towards the coast. They rode 47 miles along the Eel River to their campground, and while it was a hot but beautiful day of riding, the group is excited and ready to take on another day of cycling tomorrow. It’s hard to believe, but after today, the group only has four more days of riding until San Francisco!
Scottish Highlands Explorer (SHX2): Today our bonnie lads and lasses in Scotland completed 12 miles of gentle, lakeside trekking to arrive at their destination for the evening in Laggan Locks. They arrived at their cozy indoor accommodations in plenty of time to enjoy some cozy indoor time, full of games and a homemade pizza extravaganza for dinner. Tomorrow they continue on their merry way towards Fort Augustus.
Alps Explorer (AX2): Can you smell the basil and mozzarella? Will and Becca sure can. As they made their way into the Italian city of Courmayeur, they may just have to sample some Italian pizza. Tomorrow, they’ll enjoy their one and only rest day of the TMB and have a chance to sample another local delicacy: gelato.
America Coast to Coast 1 (ACC1): With only two days of riding to go (AHHHH!), ACC1 is in the heart of the desert near and has arrived to Palm Desert. They passed the land of the windmills (really, a TON of windmills), and tomorrow they will climb nearly 4,500 feet out of the desert. We can hardly believe it ourselves, but their amazing journey is on it’s final breath!
America Coast to Coast 2 (ACC2): Things are really heating up for Dixie and Lucy’s gang, and yes, the pun was intended. After a smooth 60 miles this morning, these resolute riders arrived to their afternoon accommodations before 11 AM and are napping the afternoon away in the comfort of 65 degree air conditioning!