Much too early for us skiers, just about right for maple syrupers, a little late for beach combers. Yes, spring has sprung. Way back in February a heat wave brought shorts-and-t-shirts temperatures to northern Minnesota. The river gorges could only hold out for so long, and they began to break up. The cold returned in late February and early March, but the ice was compromised and we were unable to lead our annual winter river trip for North House students. Even with some paltry snowfalls since, the skiing has never returned, and now the ground is bumpy and brown. Even the ice has melted other than a few patches by the road.
Off the Lake, I hear, it's a different story. Thick, hard-as-rock "snow" (or is it ice?) lies 5-10 inches deep in the woods. Temperatures are going both above and below normal, making it good for the sugar-bush. We hear there has already been a lovely strain of light-colored syrup cooked down.
We have been busy recruiting and interviewing students for Sea Change 2017, both university students and adolescents. Isn't it funny--with all the online methods of communication these days--Facebook, Instagram, Chatting of all kinds, Twitter, LinkedIn, and oh yeah old-fashioned email and the phone--it's virtually impossible to get the attention of the average busy young adult. The only way is to look them in the eye and tell them about us. Yes, their actual eyes. So we travel to classrooms. It's not always easy to find the right students, no matter how enticing our trips sound to the average adventurer. They will be filling many roles at one time.
We are thrilled to announce the first 3 crew for Sea Change 2017 May-June trip:
Maya Bishop, from eastern Ontario but studying at Lakehead University in Thunder Bay. Maya was deeply touched by our slides and is a sensitive spirit, already planning her life after school. She has led canoe trips and talked climate change since she was a teen.
Dan Vanderveen won us over last winter when he wore a banana costume to the climbing gym at Northern Michigan University in Marquette, MI last Halloween. Yes, he's goofy, but he's much more than that--sincere, honest, engaging, and hard working.
Olivia Clarke was virtually bouncing in her seat the moment she saw our sailboat on the screen.
"If I can't go this year, can I apply again next year?" she asked breathlessly. Her energy and enthusiasm are infectious, and she seems to thrive under the "dive in with both feet" approach. She too hails from eastern Ontario and goes to Lakehead University.
So there you have it so far folks! Doesn't this look fun?
We are still on the lookout for crew. Also, our adolescent trip is still open for crew applicants--June 25-July 9, 14-18-year-olds. Find out more at www.seachangeexpeditions.org