About Me


Okpik 2013

Okpik, Northern Tier is a national high adventure Scout camp outside Ely, Minnesota.  Here are some photo highlights of our trip:

Garrett, or Interpreter is going over the map
and activities available for the crew on Friday evening.
It is up to the youth to choose their activities.
Ben and Garrett staffed together at Stearns Cub
Scout summer camp and were part of the outpost.

A cup of cocoa/coffee helps me warm up for the day's activities.

Morning shadow.

Hiking with my gear on Flash Lake.

We were making our way to the campsite near the edge of the lake.  

Garrett and Mike drilling through two feet
of ice to get water.

Energy snacks!  Gorp, string cheese, Hudson Bay bread, Gatorade,
peanut butter,  jelly, and chocolate.

The kitchen is set up and ready to go for a hot lunch.

At 2 pm the dogsleds came by to give us a presentation and rides.

My musher, Kathy (also a Philmont Ranger), knows Ben!  
This was the little quinzee that Ann and I
were going to share...

The opening was pretty small...

Later in the evening, realizing the quinzee was not going
to work for two, I stayed outside and my spot was on the
left beside the downed tree.

One of the boys cross country skis as the sun
begins to set.

Now it is going to get even colder!
After the sunset, we had a good meal of rice and seasoned hamburger with corn.  It was spicy and a good stick-to-the-ribs meal along with some broth and hot cocoa.  We took a night hike to warm up before bed.  It was a lovely evening and the hike took us through the woods and across the lake.

As we got ready for bed, it was obvious that the quinzee was too small for Ann and I, so Garrett helped me prep a trench for my sleeping bag.  With the -20 degree bag and my -7 degree bag together, my water bottle filled with boiling water in an insulated bag at the bottom of my sleeping bag, a larger bottle for the next day by my back, and some snacks for late night energy (I always manage to have to make the "trip" at night), I was set.  It was so beautiful an quiet outside looking up at the starry sky around 1 am.  I woke up a bit later when the wind kicked up and I could feel light snow as I poked my head out of the bag.  I got up and made sure my gear was covered and that things would at least stay dry.  I quickly ate one of my snacks and hunkered back down to get warm and sleep.  After a fresh coating of snow and a quick clothing change. We had breakfast.  Sausage surely tasted good!  I even had a couple of warm Pop Tarts.
Sunday morning, Garrett tosses
the water...

...and it freezes in mid-air!

Back at the cabin, Garrett and I pose.
He is very tall!

Here is a map of the area.  Flash Lake is in the middle.
Here is how the temperatures stacked
up over the weekend.  We earned
our Zero Hero and also Duty to God! 

How cool to see the Stearns Outpost
Staff t-shirt!
We were back at Base Camp in plenty of time to turn in gear, change clothes, get a hot drink, and check out the Trading Post before lunch.  Lunch was good and hearty.  Chicken breasts with buns and toppings of choice including bacon!  I almost missed the fresh chocolate chip cookies, as they were on the top of the buffet!  Luckily the body burns calories to 
stay warm and I am certain all the calories I consumed will not end up on my hips!
The new dining hall/Trading Post.

The McKenzie Scout statue
reminds me of Ben.
I arrived home before Jim after the six-hour drive.  He is on the Winter Wood Badge staff got home after I had a nice hot shower.  It was a great weekend--a great crew and Interpreter, and the kids had fun with skiing, ice fishing, and dogsledding!


Jennifer said...

Oooh - it looks like such a wonderful experience. You've motivated me once again! Maybe I can get a crew together to go in 2014. Thanks so much for all these wonderful pictures.

Deborah said...

It's a beautiful place. Maybe someday I'll see it in the summer or fall!

Kathy said...

Brave soul! Makes me cold thinking about it. Good for you!