Saturday, October 20, 2012

Sep 30, 2012- Dalton Schaller

Today the ECOEE group prepared to set off on another adventure. One filled with many new and amazing sites as well as some perils along the way. To start the adventure we all had to be well fed. Chef Cody stuffed us with pancake battered jelly sandwiches and some pancakes to top it off. After that we cleaned up our area and set off on the long path ahead of us. The journey was going smoothly for a while and we were seeing many of the same sights. Then the sights began to change. Before we knew it we had gone from trees everywhere to a lot of shrubbery and ranches. It was almost desert-like. We continued unwavering down our path until we reached a town called Gunnison. There we needed to eat our second meal of the day and decided to have it at a place called McDonalds. However, some of the group appeared to be worse when they left than when they arrived. Nevertheless, we continued on our path towards the site called Purgatory. We continued for a while and as we went further the scenery began to change again. This time it was full of tall mountains with many jagged peaks and a lot of trees. We went along and up the mountainsides and found that we were slowed down by curvy paths and being trapped between drop-offs and giant rock faces. The group kept pushing through and we got past that difficulty and were close to our next temporary home of Purgatory. Little did we know that it was a very hidden site and we were forced to settle for a new stopping point. After arrival we ate our dinner and prepped for our next journey to a place called Colvig Silver in Durango. Dalton Schaller

September 29, 2012 - Sarah Welsh

Note: This journal entry is written through the eyes of Bryan from the Welcome center, somewhere in Colorado that I will not mention. My theory is he was very nervous so he was hiding, but watching us. I peered through the window of the visitor center as the students from Western Illinois University piled one-by-one out of their van. I have been very anxious about this moment for the past month, ever since Jeremy called me. They started coming towards the center and as soon as the first one opened the door, I bailed… I left a note on the counter telling my fellow employees to cover for me. The students just looked so professional in their navy blue polo’s; I did not feel that I would match their expectations. Originally I hid behind the desk while the students asked where I was. As they continued on touring the welcome center, after my co-worker made up the lame excuse that I was refereeing a soccer game, I snuck out. I watched from behind the horse-drawn-carriage as the group split apart to wander the city for awhile. The girls went left and hit up some local souvenir shops and Starbucks. I laughed as they claimed a man in a referee shirt to be me, and the littlest one, they called her Ruby, stalked him in a tree for awhile. It humored me. I took a walk over to see what the guys were doing and first noticed them in a second-hand bookshop. One bought a Sylvester Stallone book (this must have been Jeremy, the one that contacted me, because he seemed like a guy that would enjoy Stallone). I then trailed them over to the Celtic Festival where they enjoyed music and even engaged in a boot dance. I watched as I enjoyed a delicious sandwich made for me by my wife. She makes great sandwiches. The group met back at their van and I brushed past them just in time to hear where they were headed next. They were going to Dillon and then on to the Dam Brewery for dinner. I am upset with myself for chickening out of the appointment today, but it appeared that they still had a good day. Oh well, I am looking forward to another sandwich when I get home. Bryan (AKA, Sarah)

September 28, 2012 - Kelly Bauer

Day 49 – Friday – September 28, 2012 Today we woke up on an entirely different planet. As we peeked out of our frozen shelters a new sight was revealed. The blinding whiteness of our surroundings temporarily blinded us but then we remembered our mission, to explore this new, mountainous land and the beings around us. We hopped in our spaceship; without the cargo pod we were able to travel at warp speed to our first destination. Our first stop was a planet that goes by the name of Keystone. The travel time was short not only because of our capacity to travel at warp speed but because Keystone is also in the Summit Galaxy. To make the most of our visit we chose to meet with those that educate the future leaders of this and surrounding planets. We greeted their leader Patrick with professional attire to show that we come in peace. He and his fellow Keystonelings welcomed us graciously and let us follow them through the morning activities with the younglings to observe their educational ways. We watched as they utilized the same scientific method that we use on our planet. We all learned from the Keystonelings that the scientific method can be utilized in creative ways to engage younglings. Overall it was a great experience and some of us are considering coming back as ambassadors to learn more and eventually join their culture. Next stop was Breckenridge Planet, which too is in the Summit Galaxy so the ride was also short. We chose t meet with a program that works with a variety of different planets and beings with special needs. They provide adaptive recreation and had one of the coolest ropes courses I have seen in and solar system. This visit showed us the variety of interests we can pursue after our cross-galaxy expedition. A past member of our space crew currently works there with the Breckenridgelings and she followed us back to our base camp planet to answer more questions about her experience in the Western galaxies. Tomorrow we will return to Breckenridge Planet to visit the famed one they call Brian. He is some sort of leader on their planet and we will learn his ways. Goodnight Earthlings and may the force be with you.

September 27, 2012 - Jeremy Naberhaus

-it’s been a while sense we had a rap so put your hands together and let me hear you clap -woke up in a nice warm house had a meaty breakfast from don and his spouse -talked to Don about where he use to hang his hat turned out he use live next to the town where I am at. -took a pie then headed the van saw big boy ben and he was the man -He would rather be outside instead of using a pen with ink best part is when he asked what do you think? -Had a hard time getting out of the lot, people on the inside watching us get into a tight spot. -First time on a mountain road got me excited and in wilderness mode. -Showed up at the campsite with plenty of light, it’s a beautiful place I am glad that I am here for three nights -Had a good lesson on kitchen set up and a good meal and that’s no lie I’m super noonway I am rocky mountain high. -After dinner we debriefed I forgot to mention outward bound deals with kids who have grief . -I’m super sleepy I got to hit the hey about to see Brian in 2 days Jeremy J. Naberhaus

09/26/12 - Jessica Sauer

The group woke up this morning and we were in a completely new environment. The pie trees and green grass turned into dirt and mountains. The whole group was looking fantastic this morning in our great new gear and we were ready to start our new journey. It didn’t take us long to get into the jungle, and after a quick lunch with the native animals we were ready for our safari to begin. Our first stop involved meeting with the head tribe members so we could get an understanding of how their jungle was ran and maintained. The next stop on our excursion was a surprise to us all. We had never seen so many exotic and beautiful animals, but it was bizarre that after traveling all the way to the jungle we weren’t seeing anything that was alive. We soon found out that we would be meeting with a tribe that hunted not the animals, but the poachers. This tribe worked to capture all of the illegal animals that were being killed and traded and by the looks of it, they were working very hard. We saw hundreds of dead animals from tigers and sea turtles, to giraffe skulls and elephant tusks. Animals were being hunted for furs and leathers, and this tribe was trying their best to put a stop to these murders. We learned a great deal from this tribe, but we were also ready for our journey to continue. The next portion was the wild safari that we were all looking forward to. We saw mere cats and parrots, antelopes and hyenas, the safari leader was a very knowledgeable man and he told us stories about the 15,000 acres of land around us. Before it was a home to these beautiful animals it was a human hunting ground and he and his fellow tribe members were doing their best to turn the place around. Our group really learned a lot on this jungle safari and I’m ready to meet new tribes as our excursion continues. Jessica Sauer

September 25, 2012 - Sarah Welsh

Written from the view of the fly in the van. . . I woke up with the kids around 5 AM this morning at Horn Field Campus. I watched through my kaleidoscope eyes as they frantically packed the van and trailer and mopped the cabins. I noticed that the doors were closing so I jumped on the closest one possible; I believe they call him Cody, and joined them in my curiosity. The one they call Jon was the first driver and he drove through the thunder and lightning as far as he could until their leader (the one they were saying happy birthday to this morning) took over the wheel. I, like most of the group, had gotten my rest in early and started buzzing around and being antsy. The group in the back of the van was playing some game in which they would find cows on the side of the road, claim them, and then the other members would find ways to kill the cows. It made me really want to go sink my legs into a big pile of cow scat myself! A few hours later the one they call Jessica took over. They appeared to be heading west. They stopped at multiple gas stops along the way and I decided to pick up a hitchhiker at one of the stations to keep me company. Me and the hitchhiker had a few close encounters with Jeff swatting at us, but regardless of his efforts to take us out, we made it to the final destination; a KOA campground in Limon, CO. My mystery is resolved in knowing my destination for the day, but I cannot decide if I will make this my new home or continue on with the group in the morning. I guess they will find out tomorrow. Buzz (Fly)

September 24, 2012 - Ruby Fernandez

Hola Ecoee Today we started our second part of the expedition. After seeing our friends / family we got back at Horn Field Campus to get the last things ready for the west. At 8:00 am most of us were ready to start this new chapter, with mixed feelings I knew it was not going to be an easy day. First thing on the list, grocery shopping, then go to campus and talk to students about our experiences and outcomes of what ECOEE has left us. It was really cool to see how the students got excited from what we are doing and how we are becoming role models for future ECOEE generations. It made me think how lucky we are to live this experiences and challenges. We came back to horn field and I felt really proud of our group to see how everyone got done their tasks and how efficient they were on packing and getting the trailer done. This allowed us to leave time for talking with more students about ECOEE. It was funny and cool to see how some of our friends were impressed and excited to hear all our stories from Canada. It is amazing to think how much you can learn in the outdoors and how good is to have this setting as a classroom. As the day was coming to an end, we brief about our first traveling day and the LOWS got some feedback from Jeff. Main conclusion, see other options before making decisions. Although it was a hard day it was good to have everything done and be ready for the west. I cannot wait to see all the national parks that we are going to visit and meet professionals on the way. All this, at the end, is going to make us better professionals and be prepared for what the real world has to offer. See ya!!!! Ruby Fernandez

September 21,2012 - Dalton Schaller

Today we started with an early breakfast and then work. We started off by splitting the group into 2. One group went with Jeff to campus to take care of some business and to talk to students in the classrooms about ECOEE. The other group stayed back at Horn Field to do some more packing and paper work. As the day went on the group at Horn Field found themselves completing everything very quickly and not having much left to do other than wait for Jeff to get back so the trailer could be packed. Once the group finally returned from the school everyone jumped back into working mode in order to complete everything as quickly as possible. In a short period of time the trailers were loaded with everything that was ready. After that we were greeted by Neal which was a pleasant surprise. He joined the rest of the group and we went through the pictures and told him stories about Canada. He even stayed for a while and ate dinner with us which made it feel like he was part of the group again. However, he eventually left and went back to civilization. Shortly after Neal left we had a brief of tomorrow’s events and now the group is doing some more work to prepare for the trip out west. Now I am going to say goodnight and finish up some last minute things myself. Dalton Schaller

Day 41, 09/20/2012 - Kelly Bauer

ECOEE is transitioning again. In only a few short days we’ve gone from waking up inside a tent and boiling water for hot drink to showering with loofas and conditioner and being offered coffee with cream and sugar. Our mode of transportation is no longer a We∙no∙nah canoe but a van with a trailer hitched behind. There were no rapids to wash our clothes in when we arrived to our destination today but a forgotten box that did the work for us. I certainly enjoy the amenities and the convenience but nothing beats doing laundry atop a waterfall. But rather than look back I will look forward to all the exciting adventures we have in store. We are officially a third through our expedition but we have so much ahead of us! I can tell that I’m not the only one who feels this way, the group’s spirits have been high since arriving at Horn and we’ve been working harder than the busiest of bees to get ready for our journey out West. I look around at our group now and compare it with the group that arrived here 41 days ago. Sure we were hard-working and motivated then but what I’ve seen changes in is our efficiency and the love we have for one another. We’ve seen each other at our best and some of or not so great moments but we put that all aside to get the tasks done. Since arriving we’ve done laundry, unpacked, cleaned the canoes, cleaned most the backcountry gear, cleaned our river bags, and ate delicious meaty (and tuna) mac. Great job guys, let’s keep this up as we transition to the west! -Kelly

ECOEE Day 40, 9/19/2012 - Jeremy Naberhaus

Today I woke up to the sound of the highway. I and everyone else packed our stuff up and quickly and hopped into the van. Today’s breakfast was one of excitement and luxury because this breakfast was one not one of gritty hot drink and mash of some sort. No today’s breakfast was bestowed upon us by a great man name Tim Horton. We wondered about for so long about this magical place, why was the line so long why is there so many of them? Today was the day that all our questions were answered. The lines were long because the coffee and hot cider was brewed by the hands of true Canadians, the donuts made taste buds jump with joy and the breakfast sandwiches were the least greasiest breakfast sandwiches we ever had. After splurging and learning about the greatness that is Tim Horton we went back to the van and drove. Jess and Jon got to drive and they did a great job. We also went to Culver’s and clogged our arteries with happiness that I call hamburgers and ice cream. We then drove some more, people worked on stuff and had time to contact love ones. We finally visited are good old friends the gates. We got to eat choosey and stuffed our faces with cake and ice cream. Then Cody’s real talk by the fireside. After that we got to hear stories and facts from Gator then we all hit the thermArest Jeremy Naberhaus

Day 39, Sep 18, 2012 - Dalton Schaller

Today everyone woke up in a new environment. We woke up in a cabin lying in beds aside from me and Jeremy. Jeremy slept on a couch and I slept on a pool chair. From there we packed our bags and loaded them in the trailer and car trunks. On the way to the train station I was able to have a nice conversation with Denice about being an outfitter and she gave me a lot of advice. Next, we got on the train and rode for about 5 hours towards Hawk Junction. On the train we were able to get some work done and take a good nap for most of us. Jeff even had a good conversation with some strangers on the train. After arriving at Hawk Junction, we loaded up the van and trailer and we finished our trip to Pancake Bay campgrounds. At Pancake Bay we set up tents and then left in the van for the best part of the day. We went to eat dinner at the Voyagers Lodge. Everyone was very excited because that beat the dehydrated veggies, fruit, and TVP that we had been eating for the past month. At the lodge we all ordered full dinners, most of which were burgers, and chowed down. We finished that trip by getting some gifts and then heading back to the campgrounds. After getting back we had debrief and brief. Then, we all went exploring and we played a great childhood game called woodchips. Now it is getting late and I am tired, so it is time to rest up for a day full of homework. Dalton Schaller