National Trails Day- June 4th, 2016

The first Saturday of June is National Trails Day! (Huzzah!) It is a whole day dedicated to loving the trails (as if we REALLY need to set aside one day to purposefully love on the trails). A group of employees here at the Grand Teton Lodge Company paired up with the National Parks Service to tackle a trail and do what we could to help.

We started at 10 am. I was cheery and pepped up to get outside on my day off and learn about a trail that was hopefully new to me. We jumped in a van to meet the squad of park Rangers and on the way there someone said we were working on a trail called "Death Canyon".... at that point my pep went away and all I could think was crap, what the heck did I get myself into? DEATH Canyon?!? If you know me at all I love to hike and be active, but in no way am I athletic. My heart sunk I knew I was going to embarrass myself in front of a few of my co-workers.

Finally we got to the trailhead and a Ranger handed me a pair of pruners (is that even the right term? idk you know what I mean). We started up the trail, I was pruning to my heart's content. I politely pulled a Ranger aside and I asked, so what's Death Canyon like? Is it a difficult hike? He just laughed... and told me were weren't going anywhere close to Death Canyon with this large of a group, we were just tackling the first 2 miles of the trail TO Death Canyon. I was so relieved. I joked with him and told him I almost faked an illness when I heard we might be going to Death Canyon. He was not amused "Never back down on a volunteer job, everything makes you a better person." And I have to admit- he was right. It was a difficult day for me to be at a higher altitude, hiking and pruning- it was a great workout and a great day just loving Mother Nature.

Morals of the story:
-never joke with a National Parks Ranger
-volunteer for everything: you never know who you'll meet or what you'll learn
-get outside!!!

At the top of our two miles, we sat down for a nice long break with a gorgeous view of Phelps Lake. I'll tell you what- I don't think I would have enjoyed the view half as much if I didn't work so hard to see it. (I guess you'll just have to wait until August to see it)

I also saw a marmot. They're pretty cute!



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