Trip Updates

Chamonix 4B • July 9-July 31, 2019

Until Next Time, Paris!

July 31, 2019

Hello friends and family!

 

Izzy and Reece here with our final update of the trip. By the time you’re reading this most of you will already have reunited with the kids, or will be soon. We, on the other hand, will still be getting over the blow of leaving the place we’ve come to love so much and the people who have made it so special. The last two days were the perfect way to end three weeks of adventure as we explored Paris, eating good food, wandering through the city, seeing as much sights as we can and enjoying our last days together!

Last you heard from us we had just arrived back in Chamonix after completing our 5 day trek on the Tour du Mont Blanc. We were exploring the city and planning on attending the Chamonix Jazz Fest. Knowing little of what was in store for us, it ended up being one of the highlights of our trip. We got to see some of Will’s neighbors from Brooklyn play in a band called Antibilas. Made up of 8 members playing the saxophone, trumpet, guitars, bass, drums and even some cowbells, it turned out to be a night full of energy and funk. They described their music as afro kung fu funk and we loved it every bit of it. Having secured a spot in the front row, we all danced and laughed through the night pretending to sing along to lyrics we definitely didn’t know.

The next morning we woke up and made our way to the train station in Geneva, eager to get to our final destination: Paris! We arrived in the afternoon, dropped our bags off at the hostel and got lunch taking some time to plan out our afternoon itinerary. We made our way to the Louvre where the kids got to see the Mona Lisa and explore the most visited art museum in the world. Trying to make the most of their day, Palmer took on the role of the group’s tour guide shuttling them through the museum hitting all the spots in record time. The kids spent the early evening at the amusement park along the Champ Elysses, taking in the views of the city from the Ferris wheel and the swings. We made our way to dinner where Owen enjoyed some authentic Parisian cuisine of beef tartare while Quinn made sure get every last crumb of his dearly beloved French baguettes knowing time was running out. After dinner, our LODs, Lizzie and Cate found a beautiful spot and led us in one of our favorite Moonups thus far. We sat in our usual circle and created an appreciation circle where we took time to give nugs to each person in our group for what we have appreciated about them the last three weeks. It was bittersweet as we shared our affirmations with one another, knowing this was one of the last nights we would all be together in this beautiful place. The Moonup lasted into the night and made us all grateful for our newfound friendships and this adventure we’ve all been so lucky to share.

The next morning, we woke up early to get our final day started. We spent the early morning reluctantly packing up our things, knowing we would want to spend every minute of the next day carefree as we explored the city. We began our day at the Museo D’Orsay admiring the works of Van Gogh, Monet, Seurat and Signac. Katie noted that she recognized many of the paintings from her art classes, reflecting on how incredible it was to see them in person. We spent a couple hours soaking in the beautiful paintings and impressive sculptures this city is famous for. Eager to continue exploring the city, we walked to lunch. Craving a sweet bite after some of the best Mexican food we’ve ever had, we stumbled upon a small chocolate store, enticed by the bright colored Macarons. Cate and Will left raving that they were easily the best Macarons they’d ever had, encouraging the rest of the group to try them as well. Riding a bit of a sugar rush we found a vintage thrift store where Owen truly embraced his Parisian alter ego. He left decked out in a patterned short sleeve button down, a vintage puma jacket, fully embracing the come back of the fanny pack, which Elizabeth had been rocking from our first days together. Walking down the street it was hard to keep track of him as he so quickly blended in with the Parisian style.

After exploring the city some more, we decided to spend the rest of our afternoon enjoying a charcuterie board appetizer underneath the Eiffel Tower. Sara Kate picked out cheese and meat for the snack as we enjoyed plenty of samples in a local Fromagerie. Once at the Eiffel Tower, Valentina and Elizabeth were sure to capture the perfect picture with our beloved baguettes with the sun setting on the iconic landmark. Having had our fill of French cuisine, we decided on an Italian restaurant for our banquet and dinner toasted to our last meal all together. To cross off our last item on our Paris agenda, we ventured across town for one last hefty serving of gelato from Gelati d’Alberto. Impressed by the variety of flavors, some of us even had seconds. It was then time for our final Moonup as we circled up in some green space near our hostel and reminisced about our favorite moments and what we would miss most. Not wanting the night to end, we finished up after 1:30 am. With only a few hours before we needed to leave for the airport, Celia led a group in card games and helped wake everyone up bright and early.

We are so incredibly grateful for our time together over the last three weeks. In just twenty three days we’ve seen some of the most beautiful places Europe has to offer, pushed ourselves mentally and physically, and made countless memories. It will be extremely difficult to say goodbye, but each of us is walking away with twelve new friends.

Thanks for an unforgettable summer!

-Reece and Izzy


TMB!

July 28, 2019

Hello again friends and family! To say that the last five days have flown by is an extreme understatement. It feels like just yesterday that we were arriving in Chamonix after a long train day, packing up our things getting ready to explore the Alps. But nonetheless, the last 5 days have been filled with unbelievable views, amazing food, endless stories on the trail, and a whole lot of laughter.

We began our journey early. We piled into two vans, now accompanied by our guide for the next five days, Mathieu. The hour and half long drive weaving through narrow mountain roads was the perfect introduction to the Tour du Mont Blanc. Hugged by epically tall, snowcapped peaks, it was clear we had nothing short of incredible views to look forward to. We found ourselves in a tunnel spanning 8 miles as we passed under the vast mountain range, exiting in Italy and where we finally crossed off our 4th country of the trip. We tied up our boots and began our first day of trekking the TMB, all appreciating the rest and recovery we got in our three days in Spain. Refreshed, and stronger than ever, we quickly got back into our rhythm. Immediately in awe of our surroundings, as the clouds parted in front of us, we got an incredible view of the white capped mountain the TMB get its name from, Mont Blanc. The morning was a gradual uphill climb that ended with some switchbacks leading up and over a pass where we stopped for lunch. It’s this pass in which France, Italy and Switzerland intersect. We carefully chose a lunch spot on the Italian side so we could later tout the impressive fact that in one day we ate breakfast in France, lunch in Italy and dinner in Switzerland. After eating our sandwiches with a side of this incredible view, we bang our descent down to our first stop on the trail.

For our second day in the Alps, and first full day in Switzerland, we found ourselves in a slightly different terrain than yesterday. Staying lower in elevation, our day started following a swift glacial river into the forest. Before fully making it out, we came across a children’s playground in the trees that many of us could not resist. Without taking her pack off, Katie was seated on a zip line-like contraption flying a few inches above the ground while Jeff (Elizabeth J.) couldn’t help but to climb every piece of equipment in sight. With a walk primarily in the trees, Cate and Valentina led the group in twos as we hopped from village to village. As we hiked, we noticed many large boulders that seemed rather out of place, and Will and Sara Kate took particular interest as we learned that we were actually walking on an old glacial moraine! After lunch we had a quick climb to the lake, which left us winded and ready to hop in some cold water. Once we got to the lake, Palmer wasted no time and encouraged us all to brave the cool temps and dive right in. We enjoyed the water for well over an hour before settling into the hostel for dinner and a good night’s rest.

On our third day, we knew we had a steep climb to conquer and we were also racing to beat the imminent rainstorm we were warned of by many. We began our day conquering the climb like it was nothing. Motivated by the views and the promise of chocolate cake at the top, we quickly found our rhythm, booking it up the mountain. Lizzie introduced us to a new version of word assassins called clue. It’s a game that involves catching your person, in a place with a certain thing. For example, Owen had to get Quinn holding his bed sheet sitting on a bench, which he impressively managed to get right when we sat down for lunch. It definitely kept people on their toes throughout lunch, and the rest of the day as well. We made it to the next refugio by early afternoon just beating the rain storm. All beat from the early morning wake up and the tough hike, many of us went to take a nap while others played foosball and chatted in a common area of the hostel. For dinner we tried a food native to this area of Switzerland, cheese fondue. Served with potatoes, it was surely a heavy meal, exactly what we needed before our final full day on the trail tomorrow. To end the night, Celia helped lead our last Swiss Moonup as we sat under a metal roof and listened to the beginning of the night’s rainstorm.

With afternoon thunderstorms imminent, we awoke extra early today to begin our hike. Climbing nearly 1,000 meters to reach the border of Switzerland and France, we all seemed to find our rhythm and reached the pass in what felt like record time. We hiked through and above the clouds and appreciated our last view of the Swiss Alps as we reached the top. Reaching the border exceptionally early, we treated ourselves with coffees and chocolate from the refuge on the pass. We saw our first true view of Mont Blanc from the trail as well as the Chamonix valley down below. We descended into France and decided we would have lunch on the slopes of the Chamonix ski resort before our final push. After close to an hour break, it was obvious that rain was in our future and we quickly packed up and made our way into town. The day on the mountain ended with our first afternoon hike in any weather besides bright sunshine as we were met with a light drizzle. By the early afternoon we were at our hotel and enjoyed a relaxing afternoon exploring the town, taking naps, and reading before heading to a local pizzeria for dinner.

For our final day on the trail we walked along a river to our final destination of Chamonix. While it drizzled all morning, everyone was in the best spirits reminiscing on the last five days that seemed to fly by far too fast. We arrived back in Chamonix where we said goodbye to Mathieu after a short graduation ceremony where we were presented with certificates of completion. We spent the afternoon exploring Chamonix, getting Mexican for lunch and macarons dessert. Tonight we are hoping to see some jazz music in the park before venturing off to Paris tomorrow. As the trip is quickly coming to an end, we are all ready to embrace these last few days together. Next time you hear from us we will be on our way back to the states full of more stories to share!

 

Until next time,

Izzy and Reece


Cruisin' in Costa Brava!

July 23, 2019

Greetings family and friends!

After a 6-hour bus ride from Lourdes, we arrived in L’Escala, Spain to spend our first night at our bungalows near the beach. Naturally, the first thing we did on arrival was drop our bags in our rooms and head straight to the ocean. With the sun starting to set, we swam in the Mediterranean for the first time. Not ready to get out of the water, Palmer and Katie decided to hold Moonup in the water before we got some rest for our first day of sea kayaking.

For our first day on the water, we met our guides Paul and Roger just ten minutes from our bungalows at Cala Montgo. Our Catalonian guides gave us an introduction to some paddling techniques, outfitted us with gear, and we were ready to get in the water. A light breeze created some gentle waves for us to practice maneuvering to start the day, and the low sun let us see just how clear and blue the Mediterranean really is. Being at home in the saltwater, Elizabeth (aka Jeff) made sure not to stray far from Roger in the front of the group as he guided us along the limestone coast and Katie proved to be a strong paddler as she navigated the coastline, capturing the day on her GoPro. Before long we reached our first of two caves that we’d explore and packed tightly into the 60-meter-deep cavern to listen to the chirps of the bats that huddled together for warmth in the dark above us. From this cave we headed to a popular rocky beach for lunch. Instead of taking our usual siesta, we found ourselves in the shallows for the next two and a half hours trying to learn how to roll the kayaks in a capsize scenario. With whitewater experience, Sara Kate and Lizzie had mastered the roll and patiently offered hours of lessons and soon many of us were comfortable underwater and figuring out how to get out of a capsized kayak, if not roll it right side up. Quinn took a particular interest in learning this new skill and tirelessly capsized his boat until he eventually executed a successful roll three times in a row.

After lunch we headed straight for the second cave. Roger pointed out that there was an additional room at the back of the cave that could only be reached by swimming. It was a matter of seconds before our water dog Celia was out of her boat and leading us swimming through the darkness to the secret room. Once we reached water shallow enough for us to stand, we looked up to find the walls decorated in calcium carbonate. A few minutes later we were back in our boats and made it back to Cala Montgo to end our first day on the water. Before cooking dinner, we took one more swim. We unanimously agreed on tacos and burrito bowls and everyone took part in preparing the meal. Owen, however, illustrated particular skill in the kitchen as he expertly chopped the peppers, seasoned chicken, and plated the veggies. With full stomachs, we reflected on our first full day in the Mediterranean and found ourselves asleep early.

The next morning we decided to take full advantage of our beautiful surroundings and make the most of our short time in the Mediterranean. We woke up at 5:30am and wandered down to the nearby beach where we found an overlook to hike to and watch the sunrise. We sat in peaceful, sleepy silence as we watched the sky grow pinker and the sun begin to peek over the horizon. Wispy clouds hugged the sunrise and as it rose we watched the streak of orange grow brighter in the open ocean water ahead. We ate breakfast and read a reading called “Wear Sunscreen” as we listened to Ocean by John Butler in the background. Will captured the moment on his camera, determined to get the perfect shot. With time to spare we retreated back to the beach and did a quick yoga session full of sun salutations. After what already seemed like a full morning, our kayaking guides picked us up and drove us to Tamarillo, another small beach town named after the tree native to this region of Spain. Confident in our kayaking skills after yesterday’s practice, we all eagerly jumped in our boats and paddled along the coast following our guide for the day, Paul. Clearly knowledgeable of the region, he did a great job of stopping and explaining facts about the places we were seeing.

Earlier in the day we organized a game of Word Assassins, where everyone is assigned a person and an obscure word or phrase they have to get that person to say. Once you get your person they tell you who they had and it’s then your job to get that person and so on until there is one remaining winner. We spent the morning having hilarious and outlandish conversations as people not so subtly tried to get their person. By the end of lunch, three people had already been assassinated. We continued on our kayaks through the afternoon exploring caves, weaving through narrow passageways and splashing each other to cool off. Valentina and Quinn rode the caboose in their double kayak, chanting “left, right, left, right” to ensure they paddled in unison. Everyone agreed this was their favorite day on the water and we were sad to leave as we pulled our kayaks back onto the sand. Luckily, there was still more fun ahead. We had our guides drop us back off at Illa Mateau and they showed us a spot we could walk to where we could jump of some limestone rock walls into the open ocean. The exhilarating leap into the deep blue water was exactly what we needed to wake us up after a long day of exploring Costa Brava and all of the beauty it has to offer. We spent about an hour jumping off, watching boats and jet skis zoom by, and taking go pro videos in the water.

Realizing it was getting late and we were getting hungry, it was time to shop for the night’s appetizer cook off and get the supplies we needed for dinner. We selected team captains, who picked their teammates and planned their appetizers. The two teams decided on a charcuterie board and veggies, hummus and caprese salad. We gave them a budget and they went into the grocery store to pick out their supplies and strategize. The LODs, Cate and Will, settled on spaghetti and sauce for the main entree and beautifully navigated the task of buying enough supplies to feed 13 people. When we got back to the bungalows it was clear that both teams were in it to win. A leaning tower of crackers was crafted by team charcuterie, and team veggie compiled one of the most vibrant bowls of sliced vegetables any of us had ever seen. The teams were judged on creativity, presentation and taste. It was a close call, but in the end team charcuterie’s cinnamon spiced jam (with freshly ground cinnamon) won the judges over and they were declared the winners of the night. After our spaghetti dinner we cleaned up and enjoyed our chocolates for dessert during Moonup. Our time on the coast in Spain flew by and it’s crazy to think we only have a little over a week left here in Europe together. Our next stop is Chamonix where we will begin our trek on the Tour du Mont Blanc!

Here some shoutouts from the kids!

Palmer: Hey! I am having the best time! Tell will I say happy late birthday!!!!!!!!!!

Celia: Hey fam, miss ya’ll so much and can’t wait to see ya’ll soon! Don’t worry, I’m having an awesome time. Happy birthday Malone. Love ya’ll!!!

Quinn: Hi Kelly!

Will: I’ve had a great time hiking in the Pyrenees and jumping off cliffs in the Mediterranean. I’m super excited to see what the Tour du Mont Blanc has to offer.

Sara Kate: Hey Mom & Dad! I’m having an amazing time. The Pyrenees were beautiful, and cliff jumping and sea kayaking were awesome. So excited for TMB! Love and miss ya’ll!

Owen: Shoutout to nola, chester, fifi, lenny, buster, papi, and brutus!

Valentina: Hi family, the trip has been amazing and I’m so excited for the last couple days. Love and miss you guys so much!

Lizzie: Hi fam! I am having the best time! I love and miss you! I hope you had a great birthday mom! It is insanely beautiful here and I love it so much.

Katie: Hey family! I’ve had the best time so far. We’ve backpacked, cliff jumped, sea kayaked and so much more! I miss ya’ll so much and can’t wait to tell ya’ll all about it. I love ya’ll and thank you so much for sending me here!

Cate: Hey fam! I’m having the best time right now in Europe. We’ve hiked, kayaked and are now heading to Chamonix. I love and miss ya’ll and can’t wait to tell you all about it!

Elizabeth: Hi family! I’m having a great time here. We already finished Pyrenees and sea kayaking and are now on our way to TMB. I’m excited and miss ya’ll a lot!

 


A Trek To Remember!

July 19, 2019

Hello there friends and family!! I know it must feel like forever since you’ve seen or heard from any of us, but we have been busy exploring the Pyrenees and only have the best news to report back. 

It’s wild to think that we only met each other just 11 days ago. It feels like we have been together so much longer. That being said, it’s hard to accept that we are almost halfway through our trip. We began our journey together in Geneva where we enjoyed some pizza for lunch and then spent the afternoon at the lake. Before any of us even had our towels down, we found a 10-meter-high dive, and everyone swapped looks of eager anticipation as we went to scope it out. We climbed to the top and peered over the edge realizing how much higher it felt from the top. But after watching some kids ahead of us take the leap into the freezing cold water, screaming with exhilaration, we knew we had to join them. The quick splash into the water woke us all right up after a long day of travel. We spent the rest of the afternoon attempting surprisingly challenging rock-climbing wall in the water and playing two truths and a lie on the dock, getting to know everyone in our new group.

We spent the next day traveling south from Geneva to Lourdes in preparation for our Pyrenees section of the trip. With three trains to catch, we all got a big dose of what it feels like to navigate the intricacies of international travel. It was amazing to see the kids eagerly take this challenge into their own hands as they read departure boards to help us figure out which platform we needed to find. By our third train they were pros, easily navigating the French train system. This day was also the perfect opportunity for the kids to get to know each other. They spent the day swapping stories and talking through everything they were anticipating about the weeks ahead. Owen made sure the conversation never died by teaching us all new card games. Once we arrived in Lourdes, we went through everything we would need for the 8-day trek ahead, packed our bags and settled into an early nights rest knowing that challenging days were ahead.

We woke up early the next morning, fueled up on French croissants from a local bakery, apricots and granola, and piled into two vans with our guide for the trek, Anabelle. Having already led two other Moondance groups this summer, she is very in tune with the Moondance way and was clearly eager to get to know the students from the start. We had heard nothing but amazing things about her from our fellow leaders and we soon understood why. She has an obvious passion for the outdoors and quickly demonstrated her wealth of knowledge about the area we would spend the next 8 days exploring. The kids spent the day asking her question after question about the trees, the flowers and the mountains and she was never stumped. As we descended down into the valley towards our first stop in Torla, we were all blown away by the incredible scenery that surrounded us.

Saturday morning started with a quick bus ride to La Pradera or ‘the meadow’ of the Ordesa Canyon, where we would start our trek to the high mountain refuge of Goriz. Shaded by the canyon walls, we all started the day a bit chilly and eager to hike; however, we wouldn’t stay cool long as our steep climb began almost immediately. We climbed switchback after switchback as we ascended from the canyon floor, above tree line to the canyon’s upper wall. The morning was challenging, but luckily, we had plenty of conversation to keep us motivated. Celia taught us how to pass the time with a riddle game called Black Magic that had each of us captivated as our legs carried us in our first ~700 meters of elevation gain for the day. Once above tree line we looked out and saw deep into the Ordesa Canyon, now lined with thousands of yellow flowers belonging to a family of the porcupine flower—a flowering bush that only blooms for a few weeks a year and exists only in the Spanish Pyrenees. As we continued up to Goriz, Elizabeth found herself leading the pack in its first ascent. Once we reached the rustic refugio of Goriz, we could truly admire the impressiveness of the canyon as we tried to envision a massive glacier carving out the beauty, we’d been witnessing all day. The unique refugio sits at the base of Monte Perdido, the third highest mountain in the Pyrenees, visible only from Spain. After a day of nearly 14 kilometers and 1050 meters gained in elevation, all on our two feet, we slept heavy and enjoyed almost a full nine hours of sleep. 

Fully rested, we hit the trail early and descended the canyon walls before the sun could reach them. At the floor of the canyon we came across a massive, wide waterfall and took a long pack-off break. Valentina, fully overcome by the beauty surrounding us, made sure that everyone got their well-deserved photo opportunity in front of the waterfall. After our initial descent, our hike was almost entirely shaded and alongside a river. Everyone was deep in conversation and before we knew it, we had made it to a part of the river that pooled in a frosty blue color that was too inviting not to pass up. A footbridge crossed about six feet above the river, and almost all of the group spent the next hour jumping from the bridge into the deep, cold water. After plenty of swimming we hopped in two taxis that would carry us the final few miles to the Bujaruelo hostel where we enjoyed our final night in the Spanish Pyrenees. For our Moonup, we ventured outside and found what remained of an old castle turret. We climbed inside to find shelter from the wind and the craziest view of the sun setting on the snowcapped peaks over the old limestone bricks. 

We woke up early the next morning to hike out of Spain, over the pass and back into France. We began our morning with a steep ascent, expecting some river crossings, but quickly realized the heat wave that hit Europe this summer had dried up many of the rivers we expected to see on our route. By midafternoon we were gifted an unbelievable view that attracts people from all over the world, the Cirque de Gavarnie. There wasn’t a cloud in the sky and the sun illuminated the view in a way that words just won’t do justice. We took a break to soak in the beauty of our surroundings and enjoy our lunch overlooking the waterfall. After a while we descended into the small mountain town where we enjoyed our first authentic crepes of the trip. That night Lizzie and Sara Kate introduced us to our new favorite game at Moonup. It’s called Bob the Weasel, but is probably now known as the Moondance cults initiation in the town of Gavarnie. It involves standing in a circle, arms interlocked, with a lot of chanting. We were definitely a sight to see but we were all keeled over laughing by the end. 

The next morning, we slept in and enjoyed a slow breakfast knowing we had a short, but beautiful day ahead. Our hostel had an incredible view of the Cirque du Gavarnie, and today we finally got to explore it. We hiked through the valley up to the largest free-standing waterfall in Europe (outside of Norway). Splashed by the midst, under the shade of the mile-high rock wall, we escaped the heat for the morning. Annabelle explained that this area is famous for its ice climbing. The first location of any notable ice climbing in the world, it still attracts climbers from all over. The impressive walls can take up to three days to climb, and they camp on the side of the wall as they complete each section. We descended from the waterfall and found the perfect lunch spot by the river. Some students swam in the glacier water and then immediately retreated to the hot rocks to enjoy the warmth of the sun. We ate sandwiches and couscous, listened to music, journaled and drew pictures. We oddly really started to adopt the Spanish siesta once we crossed over back into France. After a relaxing lunch, we packed up our things and made our way to our refugio for the night. 

After a night’s rest at possibly the most beautiful refugio in the Pyrenees, we awoke well before the sun to make a quick summit of the Petit Pimene, one of the mountains  providing the epic backdrop to Espuguette. With a quick breakfast in us, we set out and climbed as the clouds faded from red, to orange, to pink and all of the intricacies of the Cirque were highlighted in the morning light. Will, as LOD, played a crucial role in keeping us on time as we reached the summit just before a chilly rainstorm snuck up on us. One of our longer days of the trip, we descended the Petit Pimene and then quickly found ourselves climbing to our next pass, to see what else the Pyrenees had to offer. At the top of the next path, the group unanimously decided to open Sven, the mystery ball we had been carrying since the start of the trip. The students agreed to save Sven for one of the hardest days and one of the best views. Inside Sven we found ring pops and jolly ranchers, which gave Cate and Katie all the motivation to take on the remaining four-hour hike. We descended the pass and enjoyed lunch near a river. In the afternoon we found ourselves hiking alongside a local professional rugby team with about 50 players. The team hiked with us all the way to the refuge (we had hiked a longer distance and with heavier packs, and still could out work them up the steep inclines). For dinner we enjoyed a quiche followed by a hearty chicken stew, and a crowd favorite blueberry pie for dessert. 

For our last full day in the Pyrenees, we had a rather short day consisting of a hike through Troumouse, our third cirque of the trip! Starting rather high in elevation, a dense fog surrounded us, which allowed us to gain an appreciation for what it was like to be inside of a cloud. After about a 45-minute climb through the clouds, we caught our first glimpse of sunshine and the steep walls of the cirque. Quinn took a special appreciation for the marmots and entertained the group with stories of the local marmot culture, complete with birthdays and personal histories for many of them. For lunch we enjoyed a two-hour break by a high mountain lake, caught some rays, and ate well. The afternoon was a breeze as we walked downhill to our refuge in the valley called Munia. To our surprise, the host family had seven 8-week-old puppies that kept us entertained from late afternoon all the way until dinner. After dinner we circle up in a yurt that four of the girls got to sleep in and told scary stories as the sun set. Palmer led the group in a ‘sparkle party’ as we all chewed wintergreen Lifesavers and watched our mouths light up. 

Before getting a ride back to Lourdes this morning, we woke up early for a hike up the valley for one last view of the Pyrenees. Without our full packs on, we felt more energized than usual and seemed to fly through our first hour and a half of our uphill hike. After reaching what seemed to be the best vista the valley had to offer, we stopped for a snack and a chance to take in the last views of our new favorite mountain range. Annabelle, our guide, had everyone share their most memorable moment of the eight days as we thanked her for all that she shared with us. Before long it was time to head back to Munia for lunch and a ride back to Lourdes. We spent the afternoon resetting and doing some laundry in preparation for Costa Brava. 

Stay Tuned!

Izzy and Reece


Safe Arrival in Geneva!

July 10, 2019

Hello Chamonix Families!

We received word from our Trip Leaders that all students have arrived safely in Geneva. The trip is off to a great start, and we can’t wait to hear more stories from their adventure.

  • Moondance HQ

Students

  • Cate
  • Celia
  • Katie
  • Lizzie
  • Owen
  • Palmer
  • Quinn
  • Sara Kate
  • Valentina
  • Will
  • Elizabeth

Staff