Toboggan Quest 2012 – Team Griffin

Toboggan Quest 2012


Trip Log

Hi everyone! This is Lis reporting on the amazing three-day Toboggan Quest program with Team Griffin. It was a total blast, and I miss all of you already. We had 12 students participate, as well as Brian, myself and, of course, Meredith. Check out the log for all the details and some photos.


Fri Jan 20, 2012
Day 1

Our quest first began when Mere and I took the bus to Oceanside West. There we met Makayla, Makenna, Charlotte, Jacob, Dylan and Jack. We loaded everyone’s packs onto the bus then headed to St. George. We also took a quick scenic tour to Port Clyde, which was beautiful as always. When we got to the St. George school, we picked up Kelsea, Kate, Kyle, Owen, Christian, Brianna. We finally had everyone! All right!

We left St. George and headed straight to The Apprenticeshop in Rockland. We played some games of Apples to Apples on the ride. When we got to The Apprenticeshop, we met Eric, the Executive Director. We learned that we were going to be divided into four teams, and each team would be making a toboggan. That meant four total sleds! Eric had a toboggan that he had already made to show us what the finished product would look like. It was awesome!

Our task for that afternoon was bending the long pieces of wood and then putting them into a mold overnight so they would retain that classic toboggan-esque curve. Eric had a special wood boiler that we used to soften the wood. After each piece had been soaking in the hot water for a few minutes, we worked as a team to bend it and fit it into the mold. Everyone worked together and we finished the task with time to spare. Each toboggan has seven pieces of wood, so that’s 28 altogether. Not bad!

When we finished working, we got some pizza! It was super delicious, and we were so hungry. Thank you, Meredith!

After dinner, we said goodbye to Eric and The Apprenticeshop and rode the bus to Camp Kieve in Nobleboro. We moved into our warm and cozy cabins and then met in the dining hall. We talked about what we were most excited about in coming on the trip and also what we thought would be the most challenging. Then we played a game of Mr. Mumbles. By then, it was pretty late and we went to bed. Tomorrow was going to be a LONG day.


Sat Jan 21, 2012
Day 2

We woke up pretty early to Meredith’s lovely singing. Then we put on some warm clothes, had breakfast, packed a lunch and headed back to The Apprenticeshop to meet Eric and Josh, an apprentice. All of the wood we had bent the day before was now dry in the molds waiting for us. Eric said that he thought we were the first group that hadn’t snapped any pieces of wood in the bending process! Yeah Team Griffin! Our big challenge for the day was sanding. We did A LOT of sanding. It was OUTSANDING. Actually, it was really tiring! We sanded all the pieces of wood on both sides, including the edges and the curves. The other project we did on Saturday was rounding the mahogany cross pieces with the belt saw. We finished in the shop around 2pm.

After we finished, Meredith took everyone to the Camden Snow Bowl for some tubing. It was perfect since it was actually snowing! We went tubing for about an hour, then stopped for some popsicles (because we weren’t cold enough already), and then we headed back to Kieve.

We had some time to relax once we got to Kieve, which was really nice after working so much in the shop. We had some hot chocolate, played a few games and prepped dinner. Dinner was ‘Potatoes Deal with It!’ This is one of my favorites. We had salsa, bacon bits, sour cream, cheese and butter. YUM. We also had salad too!

After dinner we had a couple of visitors. Luke and Alex stopped by for a few hours. We all played a super funny game of “Who’s Your Daddy?” I love that game because I feel like we all get to know each other a little better. After playing that, we chatted for a little bit then went to bed. Tomorrow morning was coming fast enough!

Sun Jan 22, 2012
Day 3

On Sunday we woke up early, cleaned the cabins, had breakfast, packed a lunch and said goodbye to Kieve. We went to The Apprenticeshop to finish our sleds.

On our final day, our task was to drill holes into all the pieces of wood and then use screws to attach the cross pieces. It was a long process – each sled had 56 holes to be drilled and screws to be put into the wood! We knew we had to finish though, and after a couple of hours, we did.

Then we put varnish on the sleds and finally, we strung the rope through the cross pieces. We all finished our sleds almost at the same time, within ten minutes of each other. By the time we finished, we had a couple minutes to take some pictures and take our sleds for a test run down the driveway of the shop. Then it was time to go!

We said goodbye to Eric and Josh and thanked them for all their help. We loaded the toboggans onto the Trekkers bus and drove to Oceanside West, where everyone was going to be picked up. When we arrived in Thomaston, we all said goodbye to each other and hello to our families.

It was so great to be able to share this experience with all of you! I’m looking forward to the Toboggan National Championships in February. Stay tuned for an update!!!!

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