- May 05, 2014
- Posted by Chris Seng
April was jam-packed with travel for the Eastern Wildlands YCL’s (as is every month for EW). From trail training in Idaho, to summit at Camp Mak a Dream, to backcountry training in the Bob, we certainly earned our stripes as road warriors.
The stint started off with a 13 hour drive to Boise National Forest where we joined forces with the Central Divide YCL’s and began our trails training. Four days of training and work on Haga Trail above the Boise River was accompanied by plentiful sunshine and memorable moments. Experienced crew leaders lent their knowledge and skill to the noobs (myself included). The location was beautiful and evenings were made more serene by calming soaks in a nearby hot spring. This trip also coincided with the lunar eclipse and that stunningly bright full moon.
After our crusade back to Billings we enjoyed a two-day lull in our travels as we mentally (and physically) prepared ourselves for summit. We arrived at Camp Mak a Dream with an open mind and left overflowing with self knowledge and confidence to propel ourselves into the upcoming season. Shannon, Wayne, Lowell, Kevin, Greg, and Cliff all killed it (in a good way), as well as all the other activity and group facilitators. Sadly, E Dubs placed second in the almighty MCC Olympics as Central Divide took home the glory. However, with second place finishes in both the YCL and FCL divisions, E Dubs left the Olympics with the highest cumulative ranking! Of worthy costume-skit mentions included Hulk Hogan and Big Bert, the solo Plus Delta song, Old Superheros, and the Before and After MCC Tree Huggers. All in all, summit was a success.
Immediately following summit, the entire E Dubs family minus Tauzha and Mike rolled into the Lewis and Clark National Forest and then on to the Bob Marshall Wilderness for backcountry training. We awoke the first morning at our frontcountry campsite of Mortimer Gulch to 3 inches of snow and wet tents. The following three days were spent trekking through the Bob, learning and re-learning backcountry practices and ethics, and getting to know our long-lost FCL’s. An amazing day hike to Sun Butte confirmed for the new, and reconfirmed for the experienced, the true grandeur of the Bob Marshall Wilderness. Although the trip was a great success, all of us were ready to get back on the road to return to the Magic City. On the way home we made a pit stop in Great Falls, where we visited the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center of which Kevin spoke so fondly of. His preaching did not disappoint, and all of E Dubs left the center with renewed respect for those who came before us to discover and map the great state of Montana.
This is the abridged edition of the latter half of the month of April as E Dubs saw it. Without a doubt, it can be said that this is just a taste of what lies ahead of us as we prepare for the upcoming season.
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