DEC. 22, 2016
And do we have the pictures! This past year Melissa Engimann, our Foundation Assistant, has been on a massive archiving project spanning decade’s worth of Hante and camp slides and prints. She has painstakingly been going through each image and logging and filing it into long term storage. For Hante alone there are over 35 years of material, representing dozens and dozens of Hantes. From each box, memories from around the globe have emerged dropping us all back in time.
Are you a past Hante Adventurer? If so, dig out your photos and share them with us! We have a new Hante Instagram account (hanteadventures) which is a great place to gather those up and share amongst those of hundreds of other trekkers, paddlers and climbers. I guarantee you will get a good trip down memory lane! And, it will be fun project for the long nights we are having here at the Winter Solstice.
Canyon de Chelly in Arizona
Never been on a Hante but are curious about it? You can check out all the old school backpacks, see incredible places and lots of happy people – what could be better?
While you’re off in the digital world check our new Camp Instagram handle too! You can now find us at eaglesnestcampnc.
Hope to see your pictures soon!
Noni Waite-Kucera, Executive Director
JUL. 23, 2013
Yesterday the Hante AT Trek North Carolina got resupplied near Erwin, Tennessee along the Nolichucky River. The group emerged from the woods and the Appalachian Trail, looking stronger than ever, and definitely a bit smellier than when they started. They had just descended approximately 1500 feet down to the town of Erwin, from high atop a ridge in the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Though they were a bit damp from a few recent rain showers, the group was in high spirits and more determined than ever to finish the final 54ish miles of their trek. They have already hiked 46 miles. To help them celebrate the half way make, I treated them to a picnic of cold watermelon, fresh avocados, peppers, turkey, curry, and even chocolate animal crackers. We enjoyed our fresh lunch by the river and talked about their adventure. All of the campers were excited to tell me about their trail names, beautiful views, and a few wildlife sightings. The weather so far has been nice and cool – with average highs in the low 70’s. When I asked how they were doing, most of the Trekkers said that the trek was challenging, but well worth it. All of the them seem to have gotten their “trail legs” underneath them by this point.
The group is excited about their second half of trek. They are especially excited about the Roan Mountain highlands, which have stunning views. The trekkers have been taking turns at being “leader of the day” – taking charge of navigating the group, deciding when to take breaks, when to eat lunch, where to set up camp, etc. The second half of trek is only going to make this group stronger as a trail family.
JUL. 21, 2013
Rolling out of your sleeping bag, taking time for your eyes to adjust to the darkness that surrounds you at 3:30am, surrounded by the beautiful San Juan Mountains, is all in a typical Wednesday for Hante Colorado. This week the group summitted Engineer’s Peak – a 12,968-foot summit. It was a difficult climb, but everyone completed it.
Nate and Diane have reported that the group is doing amazingly well. They are now backpacking in the Conejos Ranger District of the South San Juan Mountains. The Colorado monsoon summer season is upon them, and the group has been getting much needed rainstorms every afternoon.
Tomorrow the group will start a two-day service project and on Thursdays they will head out for a final 5-day trek.
JUL. 7, 2013
Hante AT Trek North Carolina departed campus Wednesday after a great send-off from all the campers of Session 3. The close-knit group of 5 campers and 2 staff were in high spirits, excited to finally get their trail legs underneath them when I dropped them off at the trailhead.
The group has been very busy since their arrival on Sunday. On the very first night they started their wilderness experience on a camp out near Black Balsam in nearby Pisgah National Forest, high up on the Blue Ridge Parkway. They returned to campus Monday afternoon, and starting preparing and packing out food for the trip. They participants even got the opportunity to work with Ali, our baker, to make their own granola, power bars, and even homemade honey soy bread to take out into the field. Homemade baked goodness on the trail means everything, and the bread was delicious!
Andy and Hannah Blue also dehydrated some fruit leather all day (apple butter and blueberry) for the campers to take out on the trail. The group also participated in some group initiatives to build the cohesiveness of their trail family, and made their own journals for the trip. Before heading out as well, we purchased crochet needles and yarn for campers to learn from staff how to knit and hopefully make their own hats while on the trail.
Needless to say, the quality time spent on-campus before the trip definitely prepared the campers to have an amazing couple of weeks on the trail. All of them learned new skills from bread-making, knitting and even guitar. This group is going to have such a great experience!
MAY. 8, 2013
When life condenses itself into the same three needs that animals need in order to survive in the woods, life becomes much more simpler. Cooking meals, hanging bear bags, filtering water, and putting up tarps become an organic and clockwork process whenever you reach your “destination” for the evening. Your destination may already be planned, but most of the time leaders take full advantage of the later sunsets, renewed energy of the students and the amount of water the group currently has to determine where they will lay their head for the rest of the evening.
When you’re trekking, your belly is happy with whatever warm foods you consume, the air is so fresh with the spring buds emerging after a long winter, and you simply feel alive! The best part is the sense of community, or as I like to call it, trail family, that emerges when placed in such an amazing environment. Students must rely on one another; know each other’s strengths and weaknesses, not be afraid to be completely open and honest with each other to simply live well together in the woods.
I recently completed my biannual 10-day backpacking trek on the Appalachian Trail in North Caroline / Tennessee with students at The Outdoor Academy. We had such beautiful and amazing weather, except for one day when we were stuck in a rain cloud all day. I definitely didn’t wish for the simple living to end. We were sad to find out about the Boston bombings when we called to check in with the Pisgah Forest office on that rainy Friday. While we were sitting in puddles, soaking wet in our tarp, we counted our blessings.
My group, the Ninjas, summited Max Patch bald on our first day, met lots of great thru-hikers, delivered some great “trail magic” by making sandwiches for a couple of German thru-hikers, and covered much of the same portion of the Appalachian Trail that Hante Trek NC is going to hike this summer. Simple living, trail families, warm food and laughter await, there are still a few spots available to be a part of this wonderful experience.
To see more pictures for the OA Trek, please follow this link.
APR. 28, 2013
The Appalachian Trail is the center of a lot of activity for Eagle’s Nest. Just over a week ago our Outdoor Academy students returned from a nine day adventure on the AT. This summer Hante Adventures will be doing two segments of the trail, one in North Carolina and one in Virginia. Both are covering miles that have been trekked by Eagle’s Nesters for decades. I love to think about the number of steps all of our campers and students have taken over the years on this famous byway up the Appalachian Mountain chain.
Life on the trail is one of the most amazing experiences one can have. As a camper I actually went on 3 different Hante AT Treks I loved it so much. One small group of travelers making their way each day with all they need on their backs. It is a life of simplicity, slowing down and having the time and space for wonderful conversations, meeting and overcoming challenges, and bonding with your friends like you can nowhere else. Each season brings its own challenges on the trail but also its own rewards.
Check out these wonderful OA students this April making their way along the trail. You can see lots more pictures on the OA Flickr page. Many of these students have been to camp as well – you might recognize them. If you are teetering on whether or not this kind of adventure is for you – just jump in. All you need to do is put one foot in front of the other!