- Expedition: Oct 20-25, 2019
- Health Careers Academy Expedition 10/2019
- Yosemite National Park: Hetch Hetchy
Health Careers Academy students came over from Stockton for a week of adventure in a remote and beautiful part of the park.
The group arrived on Sunday for many of their first times in Yosemite Valley. They were awestruck by the massive granite walls and formations surrounding the valley where they would be staying for the next two nights. They spent Sunday night getting acquainted with the park by watching the sunset on half dome from a meadow. On Monday morning, they met their educators and began their day full of gear and getting backpacks ready for their hike the following day. They were overwhelmed by excitement and anticipation as they trekked across the valley floor to test out their packs and finish their long day. Tuesday morning the group arrived at the Rancheria Falls trailhead out of Hetch Hetchy, and began their long, six-mile hike along the reservoir to their campsite. Along the way, there were lots of emotions. Some self doubt slowed them down a bit, but support from their peers and enthusiastic chants provided enough motivation to make it to their campsite. The group quickly settled in, ate dinner, and enjoyed a well-deserved night’s sleep. In the morning, everyone got to sleep in and enjoy the silence, stillness and soft light typical of mornings in the wilderness. After enjoying a hot breakfast, Ranger Alex facilitated a stewardship project at the campsite in which students helped remove campfire rings that did not follow Leave No Trace Principles. After the service project, they spent some time learning about Climate Change and Frogs, which ended up being impactful and memorable topics for students. The rest of the day was spent exploring the river scrambling on rocks near Rancheria Falls. The next day was their much anticipated challenge hike. The group spent all day supporting each other through and uphill hike to a beautiful viewpoint of Hetch Hetchy Valley. The final day in the wilderness included a pre-dawn wake up and a beautiful and sleepy sunrise hike toward the trailhead. Students spent the hike reflecting on their trip and the strength they found in themselves, others, and the world around them along the way. They arrived at the trailhead for lunch, said their goodbyes, and headed out on the road back to Stockton.