Hi all! Writing to you from Jackson Hole, Wyoming (we recently learned the ‘Hole’ in Jackson Hole refers to the entire valley instead of just the town of Jackson). We had a super fun day yesterday spending the morning in classes at the beautiful public library and then getting a couple of hours of town time for the students to explore around. I sat down to organize this blog after almost thirty minutes of watching hundreds of Elk grazing in the meadows nearby. I think Max’s Bald Eagle count is up to 9 now, in just three days! Yet another incredibly idyllic place to be getting to teach, and learn as the TTS community we have grown into. We had a sweet Saturday Night Circle last night where students shared how they are feeling in the group, and got to verbalize goals and share tools to stay present as we quickly fell into our final quarter. Margot kindly volunteered to write the rest of the blog (yay) so here’s a little more of a snapshot from a student perspective! Happy late Earth Day and Happy late Earth Week and here’s to hoping everyone got to spend some time touching earth recently!
Cheers 🙂 Meredith
These past couple of weeks we’ve been to so many amazing places and had so many incredible opportunities. In my opinion, one of the coolest things we did was go canyoneering. We had amazing guides (shoutout Jake and Kai) from a company in Moab who guided us through two days of canyoneering. The first day, we learned how to rappel down into the slot canyon, and then how to do various kinds of down climbs as we made our way through the canyon. On the second day, we built up our rappelling skills, ending with a 90-foot repel. Personally, I was very apprehensive going in because I’m rather scared of both heights and small spaces, but canyoneering ended up being one of my favorite things I’ve ever done and left me feeling so accomplished. Also, while we were canyoneering Lawson turned 18! We all had a great time celebrating with her, which included a visit to the nearby Colorado River, and a super exciting surprise trip to Stan’s Burger Shack for dinner in the small town of Hanksville. After canyoneering, we left our campsite on Easter Sunday and headed to Capitol Reef Field Station. But we didn’t just drive there, we had a super fun stop along the way where we painted rocks (instead of Easter eggs) and then had a combination of a pirate-themed game of capture the flag and easter rock hunt, led by our fearless SLOD (Student Leader of the Day), Max. Once we got to Capitol Reef Field Station we learned from our host Michael about all the fascinating innovations that allow the field station to function entirely off the grid, and sustainably. Not only did we learn about the sustainable practices from Michael, we were also able to get an astronomy lesson, and birding lesson from him, where we learned to identify the songs of a few of the park’s native birds. Additionally, the field station sits up on a mesa and looks over a valley, which gave us an absolutely gorgeous view of Capitol Reef. We took advantage of this through sunrise yoga, led by Bronwyn, and many walks in the desert canyon and along a stream. After Capitol Reef, we went on a long two-day drive to Jackson, Wyoming. We all enjoyed the long car ride to hang out and rest, and the many thrills of staying in a hotel (and we are also very grateful to our amazing teachers Leah and Eileen for driving us all the way, and Heather and Mer for going to Costco for us!). According to my good friend Janelle, “The drive from Capitol Reef to Wyoming was so fun #Ilovetraveldays. 🙂 ” We are now staying at the Broken Arrow Ranch, about 30 minutes south of Jackson, in a cozy cabin with stunning views of the mountains, as well as a beautiful river going right next to our cabin. Herds of elk pass through the neighboring fields every night. One of the most exciting things was seeing grass again after over 2 months in the four-corners area. I’ve loved being able to go on long walks along the river, as well as enriching class days here in the cabin. Last night, Bec and Ella made Matzo Ball soup and shared with us some of their traditions around Seder which normally happens the first two nights of Passover. We are going hiking in the Grand Tetons tomorrow, and I am so looking forward to the rest of the semester as we get to explore the North-West US and as we continue to cherish the last couple of weeks with my peers.