Camping trip a tradition

Sydney Renschler, Josie Kneller, Grace Roland, Parker Slemp, and Ashley Renschler at the Columbia Icefields in Jasper National Park during the Theresetta School Junior High annual field trip. ECA Review/Submitted

The Theresetta junior high travelled west on May 29 to start their annual Kootenay Plains camping trip at the Kootenay Plains Ecological Reserve west of Nordegg, Alta.

The trip is a fun-filled four days of hiking, camping, sightseeing and adventure!

Throughout the second semester, the Grades 7 – 9 classes have been in an Outdoor Education class and have been working towards, and preparing for, this trip for the last four months.

The group who travelled included 28 junior high students, two teachers and eight parents. Together, the trip is a tradition at Theresetta dating back to the 1980s and continues to be a treasured trip for the junior high classes to this day.

On the six-plus hour bus ride on May 29 to the Cavalcade Group Camp, they bus stopped at Nordegg so the students could learn about the history of the community and Crescent Falls, along the Big Horn River, for a quick walk and breathtaking sights.

The group hiked, after setting up camp, up to nearby First Nation’s sweat lodges before returning to camp for some games and time around the campfire.

The next day the group hiked 13 kilometres hike to the summit of Coliseum Mountain near Nordegg.

The group lucked out and had beautiful weather, which made the challenging hike more enjoyable.

The entire group made it to the summit and although there was some smoke obscuring the views, they enjoyed some time on the summit before making their way back down and back to camp for the evening.

The second last day of the trip included a morning hike across the North Saskatchewan River by way of a suspension bridge and a journey along the Siffleur River before arriving at Siffleur Falls for a lunch break.

In the afternoon, they travelled into Jasper National Park to visit the Columbia Icefields.

The group completed both; a hike to the base of the Athabasca Glacier where they observed how much the glacier has receded in recent decades, and a visit to the interpretive centre.

The last day of the field trip, June 1st was a full day of breaking camp and the long road back to Castor.

The group was very fortunate to have great weather throughout the trip and the students were able to share multiple favourite moments with the younger students upon their return to school on June 3.

 

by K. Smawley and R. Ries

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