• Expedition: Sep 13-18, 2015
  • Venture Academy
  • Yosemite National Park: Sunrise Lakes

Students from Venture Academy came to Yosemite for a week of Wilderness adventure. After meeting with their educators, Deeps and Ayla, and exploring Yosemite Valley, the group prepared their gear and themselves for the expedition. Braving rain and epic trails, they headed to their base camp at Sunrise Lakes. During their journey, students climbed to the top of two mountains, played "Keystone," helped remove seven illegal fire rings with a National Park Service ranger, warmed themselves by a nice campfire, and learned to work together as a group to support each other. Their experience in Yosemite's Wilderness helped each student to connect to the natural world and each other.

September 14, 2015
So today we crawled in and out of caves. It was the craziest thing I've ever done in my entire life, and I've had some pretty rad experiences, but that one tops them all. We had to give the people behind us instructions on how to navigate through the caves because it was pitch black in there. Before we went into the caves, we played a game called "keystone." Wow, I won't go into much detail, but the whole gist is to grab the paper you had placed outside of the circle without actually leaving the circle or letting other body parts touch the ground. It was hard but really fun. We all had to work together and try to keep one another within the circle. So, shout out to Rion for having a death grip. And Alexa for looking out for us.

bottle reach

Just a LITTLE farther!

September 15, 2015
We woke up at Curry Village. We all ate a big breakfast and downloaded before we left. It was going to be a rainy day and definitely was. On the car ride to our destination it was so foggy! We got out the car, got our packs ready, and headed out. It was sprinkling. Not really rainy, ready to go on our amazing WILD journey. We stopped for lunch, sun was out and we all thought rain was done...OKAY! It rained again. Mother Nature was so Bi-Polar. We finally came to our destination, everything was good, we are now going to bed. It poured, poured, poured, and poured. It was windy and crazy. It kept us up and aware. Our minds flying everywhere, and 2 lightning strikes. But when all is said and done....It was worth it!

campfire sit

Nothing beats a campfire after a long day of hiking!

September 16, 2015
In the very cold morning we were all cold and freezing! We ate lunch outside eating oatmeal in a cold windy morning. After breakfast most of us got warm drink. It didn't really keep me warm. I was still freezing. After a warm drink we all helped the park ranger fix or take out the fire rings. I saw some of the worst fire rings. I was so disappointed. As I was taking out the fire ring I put the ashes in the bag and took out the ashes near the tree. I took many pictures. After fixing the fire ring we ate lunch. After lunch we went on a hike near our campsite but we went higher and saw the road, Curry Village, lakes, creek, etc. We hiked down and we had free time to play, hangout, anything. We ate dinner and we had a bonfire! It kept us warm! We had a little snack. After we ate a snack we looked up to the sky and saw the Universe! It was amazing!

top cheer

We made it all the way to the top!

September 17, 2015
Today was our hike to Cloud's Rest. It was a very challenging day for me. This was my first time going hiking so it was hard. I think for everyone it was hard. The beginning of the hike was not so hard, it was tiring but not that hard. The end was hard though. I knew I was scared of heights, but I didn't think I would have a panic attack towards the end. All of a sudden I was just climbing the rocks and I looked down and I just freaked out and couldn't breathe and started to kind of cry. deeps and my friends helped me through it though and I'm really glad I overcame my fear. I'm glad for this trip because all of us got really close.

looking out

What a view!

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