By Will Vietze
Can you believe it’s been a whole week since the Apogee summer began? We sure can’t. In just one week, our trips have covered hundreds of miles, helped local communities, gazed upon a plethora (for all you studying for your ACTs, SATs, or GREs) of landscapes, shared plentiful meals, and built lifelong friendships. We’ve thoroughly enjoyed documenting their progress this week and can’t wait to share more apogees with you as the summer progresses and the adventures continue. We even have a post for all you Colin Farrell fans out there! On another note, we want to wish Assistant Director Will Robertson the happiest of birthdays!
Skip to a Specific Trip: MCJ, CI, CRM, CSA, MCCE, DEXA, VM, CRLS, CMCA, CMCB, CQA, CQB, MSA, NWXA, NWXB, PCA, PCB, SHX, AXA, AXB, ECCA, ECCB, ACC1, ACC2
The MCJuniors had a lovely day of service at the Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program in Apogee’s hometown of Brunswick, followed by some exploration and a hearty Italian meal in Freeport, ME. There’s nothing quite like a day spent lending a helping a hand and sharing a meal with friends!
The CI crew spent their morning singing sea shanties as they rode the ferry back to Cape Cod. They had a blast riding the Cape Cod Rail Trail north to Provincetown!
CRM had an epic challenge day today, reaching the peak of Twin Sisters (12,000 feet). Excitement levels are understandably high, and they’re also looking forward to a well-deserved break from hiking tomorrow, when they swap boots for white water rafting paddles (and helmets).
The Caribbean crew helped out at the National Wildlife Refuge on Vieques Island today. The Refuge is home to over 190 species of bird, aggregations of manatees, reptiles, amphibians, and aquatic organisms. It’s a place where manatee and humanatee coexist in peace.
The essayists continued to workshop and revise and even got a chance to work on their interview skills at Brunswick’s very own Bowdoin College. Their exquisite drafts will be complete in the near future.
The DEXters continued their backcountry quest through Maine’s iconic Baxter State Park today. After gazing upon Katahdin from afar, they are relaxing in camp and preparing to summit Maine’s most iconic peak in a few short days. Unfortunately, Maine’s backcountry doesn’t provide much data coverage, so pictures will come at a later date. Stay tuned, friends!
The Vermonsters had a restful, but exciting day of kayaking and service near Burlington. They were excited to work out their arms for a change and even more excited to celebrate Connor’s birthday with some groovy scoops of Ben and Jerry’s. Happy Birthday, Connor!
CRLS hiked through the jungle to town, where they went on a scavenger hunt to practice Spanish, meet the locals, and learn more about the pueblo. The afternoon was spent learning to cook arroz dulce and other Costa Rican dishes. Pura Vida!
CMCA is refueling, tossing in laundry, and preparing for an epic backcountry trip through Yosemite National Park. The sequoias they hugged yesterday continue to fill them with a childlike sense of wonder.
The CMCB squad continued to trek through Yosemite and is floored by the natural beauty and Jared’s extensive knowledge of birds. We’ll have plenty of pictures for you when they re-enter the front country tomorrow.
CQA pedaled 35 miles to Dexter, Maine, home of Jeff Coffin, saxaphonist of Dave Matthews Band (the more you know…). Twas a gorgeous day in rural Maine.
CQB rode 41 miles from Camden Hills State Park to Unity, ME today. It was a challenging day – chock-full of hills – but they came out on top (of the hills) and enjoyed a quiet evening – and what better way to celebrate a hard, hilly day? Pizza! In other news, Ezra has confidently taken the lead in the man bun competition.
MSA enjoyed the gorgeous 34 mile ride into Wolf Creek today. There were some challenging hills in the morning, but the views of the mountains and canyons made it all worthwhile. Word is: Nicholas can beckon mountain goats with his beautiful voice.
NWXA ventured out of the Olympic National Park backcountry after an unforgettable couple of days. Over the past three days they ventured through the Hoh River Valley, home of the contiguous United States’ only rainforest.
NWXB continued their backcountry exploration of North Cascades National park and are still in awe of the Twilight-esque landscape. Today Sean and Ari assumed the roles of Lewis and Clark, replete with beards, a pioneering spirit (kind of?), and a lack of ability to send pictures across the country through space.
PCA crossed the border into California, jamming out to Phantom Planet’s smash-hit “California” all the while. After cruising into camp before 11 AM, they spent the afternoon working on a local community service project (and were rewarded with pizza for their hard work!). They can’t wait to create bike-themed remixes of a wide variety of California songs ranging from early Beach Boys to Katy Perry’s beloved “California Gurls.”
The PC Bravos rolled 49 miles from Humbug Mountain (a la Mr. Scrooge) to Southern Oregon. They are supremely stoked to enter California tomorrow so they can let their long blonde hair fly in the wind (sort of). Shout out to boy-band frontman and PC support extraordinaire Mark House for keeping the bikes in shape on those long days.
The highlanders had another beautiful, sunny day as they hiked across the Bridge of Orchy to Bridge of Orchy (confusing), a small village in the central highlands. The breathtaking scenery and bearded goats warmed the cockles of their hearts. Word is: Max is gearing up to try haggis.
The Alps Alpha Explorers explored Fiesch by foot and made it to Martigny today to resupply and rejuvenate. Today they napped, swam, played games, and prepared for their trek on the Tour du Mont Blanc, starting tomorrow. Magnifique!
The AXB gang conquered Day 2 of the Tour du Mont Blanc today, which included climbing up to the breathtaking Lac Blanc – stay tuned for photos. Word is: Nick has an astonishing vocal range when it comes to yodeling with ibex.
ECCA had a lovely day of riding along canals in the Belgian countryside. They enjoyed the scenic roads and are hoping to watch some vinkensport i.e. competitive finch singing (please look it up).
ECCB rolled into Bruges to explore the set of Colin Farrell’s fantastic film, In Bruges. The town has experienced an influx of Colin Farrel-related tourism in the past decade and is a great spot for a day of rest, exploration, relaxation, and Colin Farrell adoration.
After a particularly patriotic July 4th, the coast to coasters woke up at sunrise to squash 80 miles (zoinks) before a well-deserved rest day tomorrow. They’ll be in California before you can finish the National Anthem.
ACC2 crushed their first full day in Georgia, but were most eager to share last night’s July 4th feast. It looked like a wonderfully patriotic evening. Stay tuned for some action shots tomorrow!