That is right folks….the new BIG LAUREL TRAIL is finished and fabulous! This group of expeditioners is amazing. They far surpassed our goals for a successful trail construction. It is absolutely incredible what they have accomplished both on the trail and off for that matter. Each day the crew hikes approximately a mile to the trail start, works until about noon then breaks for lunch and a nature lesson, then continues on with work until 4:30 when they break to sharpen tools, clean up the days work, and head back to their base camp. The sweat poured into this trip is enough to fill a dry creek bed!
In addition to many days of full work, expeditioners have opted to add additional hiking and exploration to their schedules. On July 4th, they rose at 3:30 AM to do a sunrise hike to Pretty Place. This is a spot just over our ridge that looks out over the SC valley. Walking in complete darkness, they arrived at Pretty Place just as light started to emerge in the sky. Sitting in silence for over an hour, the group watched what we often consider to be ordinary (night turning into day) become extraordinary. It was a powerful experience for all.
The crew is celebrating this afternoon with a mountain beach party at GRP base camp. Expeditioners are playing in the lake and lounging in the sun, a much deserved break from all their hard work. We are so grateful to this group of young people for not only taking the plunge and being the first group to experience this expedition, but taking the project on with such pride for their work. Their impact will be felt for years to come, as campers, staff members, expeditioners, school groups, and community members are able to utilize what they have built. Thank you TBX’ers!