Wednesday, June 15, 2011

A Wilderness Quest in Minnesota

International Falls, MN.  Kids all across the country are beaming with delight as the final bell of the school year rings in two months of walking barefoot, warm summer days, and exploring the natural world.  Summer camp season is upon us.  Camps Kooch-i-ching and Ogichi Daa Kwe on the boundary waters of International Falls, MN welcomed us for an unprecedented eight day stay.  While we were on the island and mainland where the camps operate, we had the opportunity to train all of the trip leaders and assistant staff -the men of Camp Kooch-i-ching and the women of Ogichi. 

We provided a Trainer Course for the trip leaders that will be bringing young campers on multi week canoe and backpacking trips in the upcoming weeks. 

All of the assistant leaders at camp spent two hours learning how to relay the principles of Leave No Trace to their campers in a fun and interactive manner.

Finally, across the harbor at Ogichi, we provided the girls camp with tools and techniques to seamlessly incorporate Leave No Trace into their everyday routines throughout the summer. 

The majestic boundry waters were a close companion to us  during our stay.  We certainly made time to explore the many coves, islands, and tributaries that make up the Land of 10,000 Lakes.  The sun seems to linger a bit longer on the HORIZON in this north woods territory.   The wildlife is abundant in this region.  We respectfully observed TURTLES, numerous deer, and a snake slithering across the top of the water in between two islands!

A special thanks to J.R. VerKamp and his staff for all their hospitality and we wish Camp Kooch the best as you continue "to inspire the growth of young men through fun, challenging, wilderness adventures that promote self discovery, teamwork, and service to others" for the next 87 years! 

Finally, we would like to applaud all the hard work of Kathy Dix and her crew as they “encourage young women to continue to become educated, and inspire others, through thoughtful actions that promote responsible stewardship of the natural environment.”  Keep it up ladies!

Explore Responsibly…Kate and Tracy


Turtle said...

Thanks for the write-up, Trate . . . I especially enjoyed the HORIZON and TURTLE shout-outs! We just picked up a bunch of campers at the airport! 

- Turtle

Horizon said...

Thanks for the write up and coming out, ladies. We had a great time having you, learned a lot, but Axel is still waiting on his Subaru. Personally, I changed my tripping habits drastically, and felt great about doing so. Hope all is well these days.

All the best,

P.S. I think you forgot to post the most important picture that you took during your time here...