Trekkers Wild St. Croix
Thanks to Freya for writing up the log! Thanks to the alumni that participated in this experience…let’s do it again sometime. Thanks to Al LaPlante, for your wisdom and your dutch oven magic.
Mon Aug 16, 2010
Five Days on the St. Croix
Day 1- Today we departed early from Georges Valley High School for the first Trekkers trip that most of us had been on since graduating from high school. It was also the first time for some traveling on Daisy. After our early departure we drove three and a half hours down east to meet our guide, Al LaPlante. We parked the bus where we would be taking out our canoes at the end of the trip and transferred our stuff to Al’s van and continued on our journey upriver to where we put in our canoes and started our trip down the river. By the time we got on the water it was afternoon, so we had a short paddle in the fog to our campsite. While we set up camp, some people took a dip in the water and others fished. One nice characteristic about this trip was that even though we slept in tents the whole time, we had a high quality of food. For example, dinner tonight consisted of steak, baked potatoes, corn on the cob, salad, and apple pie baked in a Dutch oven. We went to bed pretty early in order to prepare for our first full day the next day.
Day 2- This morning we woke up to the bright sun and Don’s “lovely” voice. After a breakfast of eggs and bacon (something I have never had on Trekkers before when camping) we packed up camp and headed out onto Lake Spednic. We had a nice leisurely paddle across the lake throughout the morning with people taking breaks to swim, etc. We stopped for lunch after we portaged around a dam and finally got on the St. Croix River. While we had to paddle a lot to cross the lake, once we got on the river we moved much faster with less effort. Since campsites on the river are first come first serve, we basically stopped when we found an empty campsite late in the day. We set up camp and again took a nice dip in the river to cool off after our day in the hot sun. Dinner tonight consisted of bbq chicken and veggies with tofu pups for those who don’t eat meat, and it was topped off by carrot cake made in the Dutch oven. After dinner we had our nightly discussion where we reflected on our day and what we have been up to since graduating from high school. Going to bed was not hard as we had a good tiring day of paddling.
Day 3- We woke up to another beautiful day. We packed up camp and got back on the river after a lovely breakfast of French toast, sausage, and bacon. Today was the rockiest stretch of river, but it was also fun to go down the rapids. Luckily, everyone stayed in their canoes even though sometimes we got stuck on rocks. The biggest rapid of the day was Little Falls. We ran the falls after first taking all of the gear out of our canoes in case anyone flipped, but we all ran the falls successfully. It was quite nice on the river again today. At times it seemed as though we were the only ones around for miles. Since for many of us this trip was a nice vacation before starting school and after a busy summer, we did not rush and took our time going down the river. Today when we stopped and set up camp, we were treated to an appetizer of bass that Nate had caught earlier today and moose that Al had shot during last year’s hunting season. Dinner was simple hamburgers/veggie burgers with a very good fruit cobbler for dessert. The trip seems to be going by pretty quickly as tomorrow is our last full day on the river.
Day 4- The weather has been pretty good to us this whole trip, and today was no exception. We packed up camp and got back on the river. Today was a pretty uneventful and relaxing day. We were on a flatter part of the river, so we did do more paddling than we had the previous day. Nate and Thomas were even more productive catching fish today as both were able to catch and keep two basses each, which made another good afternoon snack. There were more groups on the river today, which made finding a campsite harder. We ended up stopping at a place that had a fire pit but was not an official campsite. The moose meat in our spaghetti sauce was quite good, and of course a lovely dessert made with the Dutch oven again followed dinner. Tonight we had a really good discussion about the future and what we would like to see. It was sad going to bed tonight knowing that tomorrow was our last day. The trip has flown by.
Day 5- Today we woke up to the worst weather of the trip, but luckily we didn’t have far to go. We packed up camp very quickly in the down-pouring rain, but after about a half hour into our paddle it stopped raining and the sky started to clear. Since the bus was waiting for us at the take-out, we were able to get the canoes out and all of our stuff packed back on the bus pretty quickly. We were on the road by 9:00 heading back to the midcoast. We stopped on the way home for food, and other than a slight back up in Camden, we had an easy drive back. We pulled into Georges Valley in the early afternoon and went our separate ways after a great trip down the St. Croix River.