July 11, 2022
Hey howdy hey for the last time BigWild C! We are sad it is over but wow what an amazing trip and such a solid end to it in these last few days!
Picking up from where we last left you, the first thing we did in Jackson was explore around the downtown areas and shops and everyone found fun souvenirs from cowboy country. Then we stopped for out of this world pizza at the famous Pinky G’s Pizzeria and we headed off to the Rodeo!
This was definitely one of the highlights of the whole trip, we had so much fun sitting with our new cowboy hats in the bleachers, screaming, yelling and cheering for the rodeo contestants. Annie was an especially devoted fan and she provided the energy that led the girls of our group to be recognized as the Yeti Wild Fans of the Night, the highest honor a Jackson Hole Rodeo spectator can be offered. We had a raging fun van ride back to the campsite before waking up early to meet our Exum climbing guides at the unparalleled beauty of Jenny lake under the Grand Teton.
Wow what a great day, our guides were absolute masters of climbing and scrambling and they had our group of total beginners climbing up a multi pitch slab over over 100 feet! They even taught us how to belay each other and put our trust in our friends to keep us safe on the mountain and the guides spoke very highly of how well the group caught on! Everybody crushed it and even though a lot of us were hesitant with the height, everyone found the courage and strength to power through. Matthew even said he overcame his fear of heights completely!
We were all hot and thirsty after climbing so we decided to go swimming in the nearby string lake. The crystal clear water cooled us off really well and the sunset behind the Tetons was unforgettable. After swimming we had a picnic dinner of the groups favorite meal from the trip, BBQ chicken quesadillas and this time the leader of the day Talmadge stepped up to cook the up for his friends.
The next morning we got up and at ‘‘em even earlier for climbing and we went up past a positively roaring Hidden Falls to do some more vertical climbing. Matthew, Margaux, Cate, and Baker stepped up to the challenge of climbing a multi-pitch wall of over 200 feet. A crazy impressive feat for them who were all first time climbers, and although it was a challenge they pushed themselves all the way to the top!
The rest of the crew opted to crush a series of top-rope routes. Willa showed a lot of bravery by trying all the possible routes and even though she was really nervous. Brady also pushed through hesitations with height and shot like a bullet up one of the hardest climbs with the best time out of anyone. Talmadge was the first one to conquer the hardest route and proved to have impressive stamina and listening skills as he puzzled out the path with tips from our guides. Charlotte climbed more than anyone, doing every single route more than once and some thrice! Her adventurous spirit was unmatched and stepped up to every challenge.
We had to say goodbye to the Tetons and our excellent guides right after lunch in order to make it to Salt Lake City for the night before the airport. Whit proved to be a really helpful team member as he offered lot of advice and help with some van maintenance troubles we had on our way. The drive to Utah was buzzing and vibrant with conversation as the group had begun to be such good friends that their jokes and stories were constant.
As a special treat for the last night we stopped and found formal attire of tank tops, fun hats and silly pajama pants in order to meet the banquet dress code for our final dinner. We found a really cool Mexican/Kind of Italian restaurant in Ogden Utah that was truly phenomenal and a perfect last meal together.
Back at camp, our leaders of the day Olivia and Harrison led us in our very last Moonup to close up the night and the trip. We spent so much time remembering stories and slinging out kind affirmations to new friends that it was really late by the time, we decided to doze off before a really early morning drive to the airport.
And now our last day has been full of goodbyes and although we are so sad to have to leave each other so soon our hearts are full of joy with the experience and opportunity we have all had to make lifelong friends and memories. What a special trip and an even more special group of people. We loved playing out west together!
Lina and Joseph signing off for the last time, peace out Big Wild Chill!!!!
Annie- thank you for letting me go on Moondance it was so fun!!
Margaux-I had so much fun. Thank you for signing me up. It was a blast
Charlotte-thank you so much for letting me go on this trip it was so much fun and taught me so much and allowed me to get out of my comfort zone. I hope I can go again.
Talmadge – thank you so fun for sending me on this awesome experience, I had such a blast and can’t wait for another one.
Matthew – thank you so much for sending me to Moondance I will never forget it I also want to take y’all up here
Baker- Thanks for sending me to Moondance it was a great experience and one that I will never forget.
Whit -Thanks for sending me on this awesome trip. Not only I met people from all over, but I made good relationships with them. This is a once in a lifetime experience and I can say that I enjoyed every second of it.
Brady – thank you so much for sending me on this Moondance trip I will never forget the people I met on this trip and how much fun I had in the back country
Harrison -Thanks so much for sending me to Moondance, it’s a experience I will never forget
Olivia – thank you mother and father for sending me on Moondance I had a great time and met a ton of fun amazing people and I really got out of my comfort zone and I’m so thankful for you guys for telling me to go
Willa – Thank you for Moondance I loved it and will definitely be coming back
Cate – Thank you so much for sending me to Moondance, I had a lot of fun and I will definitely want to go back
July 9, 2022
Hi again all Big Wild C families it’s Lina and Joseph writing from Idaho this time with our post rafting update! Wow what a time, we were able to do a real float trip on the beautiful Salmon River with wonderful guides from Wild River Adventures. We all fit into two big rafts with all of our gear on one huge raft that followed us down. Right off the bat, Matthew and Willa connected and made friends with our guide Matt who was a hockey enthusiast from New York City. They talked almost the whole first day of rapids! When we stopped at our beach campsite the boys got excited to play hacky sack and Tal and Harrison invented an entirely new game combining the hacky sack with pickle ball which became very popular. We celebrated the Fourth of July with a hamburger cookout, s’mores, and cheesy red white and blue jewelry.
The next day was filled to the brim with huge rapids and everyone took their turn riding the bull, on the very front of the raft. Cate was nervous but we were very proud of her because she worked up the courage to ride the bull through some of these huge raging waves. Charlotte was incredibly stoked on the adventure of rafting and she rode the bull more than anyone else. It was hard to get her off of it! Whit on the other hand got a chance to row in the back and and steer us through the rapids and the guides were very impressed with his rowing instincts and talent! We pulled off to another beach for camp that night and played lots of group games including a game called Cube where you through blocks of wood to knock down other blocks of wood. Our guides cooked up a fantastic dinner of pork loin and boiled potatoes and we slept underneath the stars.
For our last full day of rafting we floated a less raging section of the river and we played lots of swimming games in the calmer waters. Lots of people took a turn trying to balance on the front of the raft Brady and Baker proved to be the best at a trust fall game where two people hold on to linked paddles and lean as far back as they can. On our final beach campsite we played more games of mafia and cube. Annie and Margaux became some of the most valuable Cube players with really solid aim with their wooden blocks. They also taught the boys some gymnastics tricks when we spontaneously broke into cartwheel races. Olivia showed a few of the boys up and proved she was a match for their speed. That night we slept under the stars again after an unbelievable lasagna meal cooed by our guides.
The next day we floated through the most beautiful section of the river yet, a tall basalt canyon with the biggest rapids of the trip. Before we took out at lunch, we all threw each other off the raft into the water for a last bit of fun on the river. We said goodbye to our guides during lunch at our take out boat ramp and then we got ice cream in the little rafting town of Riggins Idaho. We drove part of the way to Jackson and stopped in Glenn’s Ferry after dinner at a really good Mexican restaurant in Boise. Today we are finishing our drive to Jackson and we will start our climbing in the Tetons tomorrow!
-Lina and Joseph
BGW2C shout outs
Charlotte- hi mom and dad having fun I can’t wait to see you again
Willa- hi mom and dad I’m having lots of fun on moondance and don’t want to leave yet but exited to get home love Willa
Olivia – hi mom and dad I’m thriving and I miss your spinach dip. I love and miss you a lot, love your favorite child
Matthew- hi mom and dad I’m having a lot of fun. All the activities have been super fun! Miss you
Brady: hey dad and mom I’m chilling on the trip I really enjoyed rafting and I’m having lots of fun
Talmadge: having a fantastic time with the group. Met some cool people. Having tons of fun.
Hey y’all! It’s been fun and wish it could last a bit longer. Miss yall and see you soon!
Hey mom and dad! I have had so much fun these past few weeks and have made so many good friends! We finished our rafting trip today wich was so much fun! Can’t wait to see y’all soon!
Hey Mom and Dad,
Im having a great time and just got finished white water rafting. Can’t wait to see y’all in a couple days!
Hey mom and dad we just finished rafting today and we are going climbing next!! I miss y’all but I am having so much fun. Love you guys!!
Hi mom and dad we finished rafting today and it was a lot of fun. We start climbing tomorrow and I’m so excited. I love you guys and miss y’all so much!
Hi mom, dad and tierney I am having a blast. It so fun! Miss you guys. love you lots. White water rafting was so fun. Can’t wait to see you guys. Happy birthday Chase. Love you!
July 3, 2022
Hey howdy hey! It’s Lina and Joseph with the first update from our Big Wild trip! The last 6 days have been filled with adventure, trying new things, and making new friends. Our first full day together we learned a whole lot about fly fishing from the experts at Rendezvous Anglers and everyone got prepared for our backpacking section the next day.
On day 3 Zane, our guide from Camp GROW, led us into an absolutely stunning alpine meadow in the Wind River Range where we set up our base camp. Everyone was really excited to play fly fishing, so we took our rods down into Cedric’s meadow that had a snaking stream where Harrison caught two fish his very first time ever fly fishing! The rest of the day was spent getting camp all set up and learning about playing in the back country. Charlotte was especially excited about the opportunity to get of her comfort zone and try so many new things.
The next day we got up and went fishing again where this time both Cate and Willa hooked a fish for the first time! Matthew was the only one today who actually got his hands on a fish for a picture, but he was just fooling us with a dead fish he found on the River bank. After a beautiful morning for fishing, we went back up to camp for lunch but a crazy big hailstorm came rushing in out of nowhere. We all huddled in our tents for only a few minutes while marbles of hail pounded on the rain flies. When the storm passed, we came out to see an inch of sit ice on the ground and we promptly engaged in a customary summer snowball fight. Shortly after, our leaders of the day, Whit and Olivia led us through an unexpectedly adventurous day hike through a jungle gym of fallen pine trees from a recent blowdown. Olivia and Whit made the right call when the trees got too thick that we weren’t able to get to the view we wanted. But we did get the opportunity to learn about forest dynamics such as wind working to open up space for new trees, as well as factors like the mountain pine beetle and wildfires which increase the damage. Dinner tonight was one of our best, BBQ chicken quesadillas and Baker helped a lot and learned even more about some new cooking skills. Our evening ended with a rousing game of “Contact” and one of many breathtaking sunsets.
We hiked out early the next morning to get to make pancakes cheffed up by Charlotte, Annie and Margaux, and get on our way back to town for showers. We stopped for some yummy soft serve ice cream on our way back to our campsite at Mountain Springs Ranch. Tal gave his all during the most fun car ride with his excitement and singing along with the music. We had some time before dinner for spikeball where Brady and Margaux proved to be an almost unstoppable team with a 10-0 record. That is until Annie and Tal finally broke their streak.
Today we are making the long drive to the Salmon River in Idaho for rafting. Wyoming saw us off well though as we saw a massive male moose walking through town and two bald eagles perched on a fence. I’d say that it has been a fantastic first couple days and we are ready for more! Talk soon!!!
June 28, 2022
Hello Big Wild Families!
We just heard from our leaders that the group has landed safely in Salt Lake City. The trip is off to a great start, and we cannot wait to hear more stories from their adventure.
Please remember our leaders and students will be unplugged during their trips but we will be posting up to three trip updates throughout the next couple of weeks! This will allow you to follow along with the trip and the students will also give a special shout out mid-way through! You can also follow us on Instagram, @moondanceadventures, to see more of what we are up to this summer!