Tuesday, July 30, 2013

DMC Last Week Update

Hi Parents and Friends of Durango Mountain Camp,

All goes well and Yes – this is the last week of DMC and we have a very full schedule!  Let me catch you up on the last few days.  This past weekend, was “Extreme Weekend” so we had  groups adventuring in various places.  One group travelled over multiple high mountain passes to camp out at @ 11,000 feet to climb a 14,000 ft. peak.  Another group drove over the mountains to Telluride to climb some multi-pitch cliffs.  The rest of the group went scuba diving, and zip-linning, and playing “king of the raft” on the Cross Bar X lake. But the heavens opened up and we had our heaviest rains of the whole summer.  The 14 teener group got chased off the high peaks, so did a high alpine multi pass route back to DMC.  The climbers got blasted all night and ended up spending time at Christine and Justin Tschinkels house – playing in the hot tub, having a great breakfast, and go-karting.  The group that stayed at home went “extreme putt-putt golfing” on Sunday morning before going to Fort Lewis College for some scuba diving and playing in the pool. All the groups gatheredfor dinner on Sunday evening and had great stories to tell.  What really struck me is that even though we could not finish the activities that we had planned due to the weather, everyone had a great attitude and a willingness to make the most of a rainy and stormy day.  So a great weekend was had by all.

We started our academic testing this today and should finish that up tomorrow.  Our afternoons are filled with “chop suey” activities where the campers get to choose outdoor pursuits that they are interested in and haven’t had a chance to try yet.  So we are river surfing, biking, horse riding, climbing, paint balling, and cliff jumping.  

The campers and staff decided not to put on a talent show, and have opted instead for a less demanding schedule for that day.

On Friday the campers and staff will gather for our camp closing luau – which will take all ofFriday afternoon and evening.  Then on Saturday, we’ll welcome family and friends for our closing ceremonies.

If you are arriving early to Durango and want to spend time with your camper, just let us know and we can communicate the day’s schedule and coordinate your visit with your camper.  As a reminder, the luau is a special time for the staff and campers to say a  “aloha” to each other, so this time is not open to families. Saturday is for family and friends to help celebrate and recognize the hard work and accomplishments of the campers.

On Saturday, DMC opens at 9 AM for parents to pack up their campers.  We’ll have a good brunch at 10 am, followed by our Closing Ceremonies at 11, and this should finish up at @ 12:30.  I hope that you can come.

Here are a couple of things that we need to know:
Let us know if you would like us to take your camper to the airport.
We can have your campers bike packed up and shipped home if needed – the cost is usually @ $155.
Please send me an email back and let me know if you are coming to the Saturday brunch and how many.

As a reminder, early next week, we will email a comprehensive report containing the campers testing results, an academic overview, comments on the camper’s outdoor pursuits, insights into their time in the cabin, and recommendations for the future.

The summer has been full, challenging, fun and has gone by incredibly fast.  We will certainly be saddened to say goodbye to our campers and staff, but we are all looking forward to some free time.

I hope to see you soon.

Zane Bilgrav

Final Camper Writing Pieces

By Nick R.:

We were out on the water all quiet until buzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz fish on !!!!  My dad, my friend Gianni, and I we were bottom fishing in the Bahamas. The rod has just gone off and I grabbed it.  There  it was; a nice Nassau grouper in the boat. I started chumming again and Gianni sent another rod back. All of a sudden buzzzzz, Gianni couldn't stop him. The fish and he were going at it for about 30 minutes, then we gaffed him and victory was his. That was my fishing trip to the Bahamas. 

By Mary S.:

The sunhouse smells of Jennifer Lopez air freshener that Taylor received for her birthday on the 5th of July. Pandora plays on the Ipads as Steffi sings and dances along with all of her slick moves and fun faces. The other girls sit on the sofa and listen to music while we make bracelets or snack on granola bars or cookies. Upstairs the floor creaks loudly with every step as you walk along the rooms. Sabrina's room first, then Taylor's and my room, next Josie's, and then Steffi's room, which has clutter splayed across the floor and markers and toys everywhere. The upstairs railing is covered in various colors of streamers; twisting all the way along. Outside, lights guide the old wooden not-so-safe stairs all the way up. 

Tutoring is finally winding down.................by Pam Savage

Tutoring is finally winding down and the students are ready for testing.  They’ve worked incredibly hard this summer, but I can’t say they haven’t kept me laughing!  Ethan came to class with his face painted one day.  I have to say it was hard to keep a straight face while tutoring that day.

Similarly,  John decided he needed to keep us entertained while he did fluency reading in the afternoons for a couple of days…
It was great fun last week to see them outside of tutoring at the cardboard boat races and the rodeo!
Sabrina, Mitchell, Ethan and Keely also come occasionally to play Druidawn, a motivational writing game.  There is no end to the humor as they take on the roles of elves, elementals, shape shifters, and shadow knights to track down the thieves who stole the “Staff of Justice.”  We’ll be picking up the pace in our writing and the game this week and let you know how we are doing on our quest!
Pam Savage