Yosemite Trip Blog
Friday, October 18th - UPDATE #2
Looks as if we will arrive closer to 5:00 PM.
Friday, October 18th - LUNCH UPDATE
We have arrived in Fresno for lunch. We anticipate on leaving between 12:45 - 1:00 PM. We will stop at a rest stop at the Tejon Pass. We anticipate arriving at AEW and ACS between 4:30 - 4:45 PM. In case of traffic, we will update the blog. PLEASE DO NOT CALL THE SCHOOLS!
PLEASE FOLLOW ALL DROP OFF PROCEDURES. AEW parents, please do not park in the front parking lot.
Friday, October 18th
FAREWELL YOSEMITE! WE HAD A BLAST!
Breakfast is scheduled for 7:40 AM. After breakfast we will go back to our cabins to check out. We hope to leave between 8:30 - 9:00AM. The buses stop in Wawona for the students to use the rest room and get some fresh air after the winding road out of Yosemite Valley. Then we stop back in Fresno for lunch and we will pass back the $10 we collected from the students at the beginning of the trip. Once we are in Fresno I will be able to update the blog for a more accurate arrival time to our perspective schools. Please do not call the schools, instead check the blog for our estimated arrival times. Stay tuned!
Thursday, October 17th
The last of our groups went on their Challenge Hike, and they made it all the way to Nevada Fall! Way to go! Many of our groups participated in their service learning to help Yosemite Valley remove the under brush. A few of our groups wandered along the Merced River and learned about the topography and geology of Yosemite Valley. This evening we walked back to the Visitor Center to participate in some fun closing activities.
Wednesday, October 16th
Today the students woke up a bit more tired! The weather was a beautiful 75 degrees with a few clouds in the sky. Tomorrow we are expecting some colder temperatures. A few more groups went on their Challenge Hike, and they all made it past Vernal Falls to Clarks Point! Some more groups went to El Capitan and even saw some climbers doing a "big swing" in the boot. Their NatureBridge Educator had never seen that done before! So cool! Other groups went to the Merced River and did a water ecology lesson. Another group learned about wildfires. Tonight we walked to the Visitor Center for our night program about the Cosmos.
***Please be aware that some students have been trying to use the payphones and the service is terrible! Please don't freak out if you have a missed call from a Yosemite Valley number. Rest assured that if there was a true emergency Mr. Espinoza or Ms. Miller would contact you ASAP.
Tuesday, October 15th
Today some of our groups had their Challenge Hike! They made it past Vernal Falls and to Clarks Point where they were able to see Nevada Falls. This is a huge accomplishment, go ACS and AEW! They came back tired and very happy with their success. Other groups visited the Bear Caves, went to the Indian Science Center, went to Mirror Lake and had a water ecology lesson, participated in a service learning project with the National Parks Department and removed underbrush. Tonight the groups will have our evening program in nature instead of the Visitor Center Auditorium. We are going to play some night games to work on our night vision.
*** The internet is really slow tonight and I am having difficultly downloading pictures. If I can't get them up tonight I should be able to tomorrow. I'm so sorry! I know you want to see pictures of your children. I'm trying! :) Stay tuned....
Monday, October 14th
GOOD MORNING YOSEMITE!
We had a wonderful night's sleep and are reenergized for our first day on the trail! We had a hearty breakfast, met our NatureBridge Educators, packed our lunches, and headed out for a majestic day - ALL BEFORE 8:30 AM!! Stay tuned for more updates this evening. Have a magnificent Monday!
On trail today some of our groups visited the "Spider Caves", Mirror Lake, "Bear Caves", and Lower Yosemite Falls. On the trail they played some team building games, one of the students favorites game was "Peanut Butter River". The students feasted on a sun-butter and jelly sandwich, celery, animal crackers, Fritos, and various snacks throughout the day. Some of our students went "Hard-Core" and ate an entire apple, core and all! Tonight we walk back to the Visitor Center and listen to a NatureBridge educator that traveled over 800-miles on the Pacific Crest Trail.
Sunday, October 13th, 6:00 pm
Both schools made it safely to Curry Village in Yosemite. We are currently eating a delicious dinner of Turkey Meatloaf, cauliflower chickpea gratin, tater tots, peas and corn, salad bar, and dessert! After dinner we are going to take our nightly walk to the Visitor Center for our orientation meeting. We will be back at camp around 9:30 pm and will promptly get ready for bed. We are all very excited for tomorrow where we will begin our first day on trail! Stay tuned for more updates.
Please be advised that the wifi and cell service are very slow and I can only update in the restaurant during meal times. I will try my best to update this week as much as possible!
We are aware and monitoring the Briceburg Fire in Mariposa County. There are no plans to cancel the scheduled trip. If this changes Ms. Miller and/or Mr. Espinoza will be in contact.
See below for the most recent updates from NatureBridge.
"As noted in our email on October 9th, we want to provide you with an update on NatureBridge programming and the Briceburg fire, currently burning 30 miles West of Yosemite National Park. The safety of participants and staff is our top priority. With increasing containment (30%), marginal fire growth (the fire has not expanded beyond 4,905 acres), a stable weather forecast, and improving air quality trends, we are planning on all fall programs taking place as scheduled. None of the facilities where NatureBridge programs take place are threatened or endangered. Furthermore, you cannot see fire or the fire fighting operation (helicopters and support planes) from anywhere we operate in the park.
Yosemite National Park is 100% open to the public. Air quality trends are showing improvement, and our program areas are experiencing clearer skies (see Yosemite webcam picture below). For current road conditions in the park, call (209) 372-0200 or CalTrans at (800) 427-ROAD. State Highway 140 is currently closed due to the fire. Please plan on taking Highway 120 from the North or Highway 41 from the South to enter Yosemite National Park.
Additionally, the park concessionaire has ensured that all facilities and services needed to support our operations are in place to welcome students.
Please let us know if you have any questions or comments. You can contact our Director of Risk Management Jeff Crow directly at: 559.840.7260. If you would like to check out current air quality conditions, this PurpleAir link provides up to date information. Be aware the values for Yosemite Valley are often inflated due to tourist campfires in the nearby campgrounds.
On behalf of everyone at NatureBridge, we look forward to seeing you and your students soon!"
NatureBridge’s Yosemite Operations Team
-updated on Friday, 10/11; 1pm
"At this time, fall NatureBridge programs in Yosemite are expected to proceed as planned. As fire containment efforts increase, we will continue to monitor overall conditions in the park. You can expect to receive an email update about next week’s program this Friday, October 11th by 12:00 noon. Additionally, you can monitor conditions directly via this National Park Service link here: Yosemite Air Quality"
-updated on Thursday, 10/9 8pm
This is the official A.E. Wright and A.C. Stelle Yosemite trip blog. Please check in here for daily updates from camp. Parents please make sure to attend the parent meeting at 7pm Wednesday, September 11, 2019 in the Multipurpose Room at A.C. Stelle Middle School. Specific trip information will be presented at that time.
All campers need to meet in front of the Main Office of their respective schools between 7:00 - 7:15am Sunday, October 13, 2019. Look on the office door for bus lists and other pertinent trip information. Students should wait on the sidewalk outside the office area until chaperones arrive to take roll. DO NOT board your bus until a chaperone has instructed you to do so.
Each camper MUST have a THICK, HEAVY INSULATED, WINTER WEATHER-TYPE JACKET and a $10.00 bill in their hand when boarding their bus. DO NOT PACK THESE ITEMS IN YOUR LUGGAGE! THEY MUST BE IN HAND WHEN BOARDING THE BUS!
Be prepared for all types of weather! Up to date weather information available at the National Weather Service web site.