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Just a hike in the woods?

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The 2011 Summer Staff returned today from their annual staff training outtrip. Less than 24 hours after they all came together, they embarked on an overnight escape to Hartwick Pines State Park. A little history, many tall trees, some lumberjack camp experiences and a lot of mosquitoes later, they are refreshed, bonded and educated like never before. Here is some of what they learned:

1. Bugspray is optional but those darn skeeters will come after you if you stand in one place too long!

2. Any food tastes great if you wait long enough for it to cook over the fire. Especially Banana Smiles: bananas split open, filled with marshmallows and chocolate chips, then sealed in aluminum foil and toasted in the fire!

3. Putting up one’s tent and rainfly correctly does indeed keep the wet weather out of the tent.

4. Making too much noise in the morning will attract others who might decide to take down your tent for you- while you are still in it!

5. Hiking with a new partner and spending one-on-one time makes any hike go faster (and so do the mosquitoes!).

6. It is very easy to stand in awe of God’s creation at the foot of a 400-year old tree or underneath a night sky lit up with lightning or gazing at a delicate pink lady’s slipper!

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