Gnowees: This week the Gnowees opened the week with a beautiful ceremony honoring a staff with the Gnowee Token. Glowing Sunshower and Blazing Kodiak took the lead in explaining the concept of what being a Gnowee means, not just once but again later in the week, honoring a new Gnowee with their welcome ceremony. The Gnowee themes of being honest, open, willing and respectful continued on throughout the week as all students worked on both individual goals and group goals. Graceful Sunrise busted her 104th coal (100 of those made in the last two weeks), her diligence with busting was contagious and all Gnowees have since showed an increased excitement around firemaking. One night the group was treated with a beautiful thunder and lightning storm in the distance The Gnowees have shown increasing appreciation of both the beauty and challenge of the desert.
Ulurus: Early in the week we started off with a group busting challenge which brought out everyone’s competitiveness and the opportunity to show off their skills.The following day we started off with an early morning hike to see the sunrise from a nearby hill. As the group progressed throughout the week they pushed through some very challenging hikes that led us up Indian Canyon. Everyone was excited to explore the nearby creek and harvest willow to make bows and packs. At the end of our week together, we went for an evening hike further up the canyon giving a new view of the lower valley from which we came. We were able to honor a group member with a trail name; Kind Willow. The Ulurus had a wonderful week of growth and excitement exploring the desert.
Goannas: The Goannas had an awesome action-packed week this week! It began around the historic Simpson Springs campground which sits on the original path of the Pony Express. After a couple of challenging hikes, the group found themselves deep into Indian canyon, where we found a creek and an abundance of Willow! Several students took advantage of these wonderful natural resources and learned creative ways to pack lightweight hiking packs. Before we left the canyon the group was able to do a long day hike to peak the Indian Mountain. Overall, the Goannas had a very fun and exciting week full of team building and individual growth.
See What’s Happening in First Camp @ outBACK
Students steadily came and went, adjusting to their new surroundings and beginning to work on their back packs and some outdoor primitive skills. Nights were spent going on short hikes and enjoying the sunsets. Days were spent working on first camp books and getting better acquainted with what the outBACK routine will look like. Every student had a chance to begin processing the fact that their outBACK journey is about to begin.