Dear Moosilauke Families,
We are happy to share our fourth letter home for summer 2021 covering Monday, July 12th through Sunday, July 18th.
Overall, there is a very positive, kind, authentic, and warm “vibe” at camp this session—even with the rain! Many days it is most evident during announcement and community time after the meals. The sheer joy and togetherness that you feel when the whole camp locks in on one of the traditional chants and songs is very moving. The dining hall is also the place you see campers as young as 8 volunteer to get up in front of close to 200 people and show gratitude for the actions of another, recount a trip or game, or just tell a joke or do a silly dance. You can also see it in so many small moments throughout the day. For example, after activity classes the majority of campers take a moment to say thank you to their counselors. When Bill is undertaking a carpentry project multiple campers will immediately run up and ask if they help. And at every intramural game the boys are amazingly supportive of each other.
And now, on to the daily diary. On Monday, July 12th, the Inter Bs (eleven-year-olds) headed to Cliff Island on Newfound Lake for an overnight adventure. After a quick one-mile canoe paddle to the island the campers were thrilled to be greeted by a family of ducks. After setting up their tents the campers explored the island and then went for a swim. For dinner, they feasted on hamburgers and hotdogs with S’mores for dessert, all cooked over a campfire. After dinner, the group played “Sardines” and “Manhunt” and fished until sunset. Also on Monday, the Senior Bs (thirteen-year-olds) had their turn of swimming fun at Baker Cliffs, followed by an ice cream treat at Moose Scoops.
Other activities on Monday included the first matches of the Moose Open tennis tournament, a Senior A (fourteen and fifteen-year-olds) intramural street hockey tournament, and an Inter A (twelve-year-olds) kickball tournament. Meals on Monday were pancakes and bacon for breakfast, chicken parmesan sandwiches with tater tots for lunch, and mac-n-cheese for dinner. On Monday evening, the campers were able to view a recording of the European Cup soccer finals between the United Kingdom and Italy. Other evening activities included kickball, tennis, fishing, a ping pong tournament, rugby, and some relaxing beach time around a campfire.
Tuesday, the Senior A1s (fifteen-year-olds) departed for a two-day rafting trip to Maine. After arrival at the hotel the group took full advantage of the swimming pool. Dinner was a pizza fest that included salad and brownies for dessert. The next day, after a quick continental breakfast, it was time to hit the rapids. The white water was challenging and fast, but not one raft capsized. For lunch, they were treated to a smorgasbord of salmon, steak, and chicken. Also on Tuesday, a group of Senior A2s (fourteen-year-olds) enjoyed their own overnight on Cliff Island of Newfound Lake. In Camp there was intramural flag football for the Senior Bs (thirteen-year-olds) and intramural wiffleball for the Juniors (eight, nine, and ten-year-olds). Food in Camp on Tuesday included scrambled eggs and potatoes, sweet and sour chicken with noodles for lunch, and the traditional “Taco Tuesday” for dinner. Evening activities were a crayfish hunt, “Knockout,” fishing, wiffle ball, dodgeball, flag football, and tubing.
On Wednesday, the Inter As (twelve-year-olds) departed for a hike and overnight at Mt. Moosilauke. They made good time up the 3.5 mile Gorge Brook trail and then after a lunch on the summit they came down via the Carriage and Snapper trails. Although clouds partly obscured the view at the 4,802 foot summit the boys loved that they could see Mt. Kinsman to the North, The Presidential Range and Franconia Ridge to the Northeast, and Lake Winnipesaukee to the Southeast. Once down the mountain the boys were thrilled to learn that they were staying in the recently renovated Moosilauke Ravine Lodge that is run by Dartmouth students. According to the campers, the dinner of mac-n-cheese with Kielbasa, salad, homemade bread, butternut squash soup, roasted broccoli, and Oreo cupcakes for dessert provided by the lodge staff was “amazing!” The breakfast of eggs, sausage, blueberry muffins, and oatmeal was equally outstanding. All in all, the trip was a highlight of the summer for many of the boys.
Also on Wednesday, there was an open-ages top-rope rock climbing trip to the crags at Rumney. Meals on Wednesday were French toast and sausage for breakfast, chicken patties and potato wedges for lunch, and spaghetti with meat sauce and garlic bread for dinner. The highlight of the evening was a “tall-tale” from Port at the beach campfire circle.
Thursday, two groups of Senior A2s (fourteen-year-olds) ventured out for one the great Camp adventures: the three-day, two-night hiking overnight to Mt. Washington. The first group hiked the famous Lion’s Head Trail. Given that they made great time and arrived at their campsite, Hermit Lake Shelter, at noon they were able to have a leisurely lunch and then summit Washington that day without their packs. They then returned to their campsite for a meal of mac-n-cheese and salami. The second day they summited Mt. Washington again, but it was much more challenging given their full packs and the rain and high winds they encountered. Once they reached the second campsite, the Perch, they enjoyed chicken quesadillas for dinner and then went straight to sleep. The last day they descended the mountain in under 2 hours. Upon seeing the end of the trail, the group let out a big sigh of relief and high fives were shared all around. They feasted on pizza on the return trip to Camp.
The second group took the “traditional” Moosilauke route. They reached their 1st campsite, the Perch, in the early afternoon and after lunch hiked to the summit of Mt. Adams. Dinner back at the campsite was chicken quesadillas and then it was quick to bed in anticipation of a long day of hiking the following day. The group, which got an early start, had to face high winds, rain, and fog as they summited both Mt. Jefferson and Mt. Washington. After a much deserved long break at the top to dry off, rest, and re-fuel with a lunch of peanut butter and Nutella wraps they headed down to their 2nd campsite, Hermit Lake Shelter. Dinner was mac-n-cheese with summer sausage. In the morning, after a quick “cheesy bagel” breakfast, the group rambled down the mountain at a rapid pace so they could join the other group for the promised pizza fest in town.
In Camp, woodworking was very popular given that the project was handmade walking sticks courtesy of Harry, a local artisan. The project entailed finding the branch they wanted to use, removing the bark, and then sanding and engraving it. The final steps included adding a paracord grip and then sealing it.
Intramural competition on Thursday included: flag football for the Senior As (fourteen and fifteen-year-olds) and street hockey for the Senior Bs (thirteen-year-olds). Meals on Thursday were fried eggs and potatoes for breakfast, grilled cheese and tomato soup for lunch, and barbecue ribs with coleslaw for dinner. In the evening on Thursday, campers played kick the can, kickball, Ultimate frisbee, and “Knockout,” and they also went paddle boarding and fishing. Later in the evening, the Seniors (thirteen, fourteen, and fifteen-year-olds) enjoyed a “Moose night at the movies” with a viewing of “The Tomorrow War” on the fields on the large inflatable screen.
Friday, a group of Juniors ventured out on a mountain biking trek to Orford Beach in the morning. It was fun for the boys to explore around the lake and enjoy a quick swim and snack at the lake’s beach. In the afternoon, the Juniors and Inter Bs (eight, nine, ten, and eleven-year-olds) participated in a dodgeball tournament that included wacky outfits and the Inter As (twelve-year-olds) played in a street hockey tournament. Meals on Friday were bagels with cream cheese and jam and bacon for breakfast, meatball subs with potato wedges for lunch, and the camp favorite, “Kenny cookout,” for dinner. Friday evening, there was a sand castle building competition, Ultimate frisbee, a ping pong tournament, street hockey, dodgeball, and tubing.
Saturday saw on-and-off rain so the boys spent some time in their cabins while also getting in an intramural basketball tournament for the Senior As (fourteen and fifteen-year-olds). Meals on Saturday were egg sandwiches for breakfast, assorted cold cuts and cheese sandwiches with potato chips for lunch, and deep-dish pizza for dinner. Saturday was also movie night. Junior Hill enjoyed a viewing of the classic “Space Balls” and Senior Hill was treated with a surprise viewing of the current “Black Widow” movie. As per usual, the staff provided homemade popcorn for all to enjoy.
Per our tradition, campers were allowed to sleep in on Sunday and then enjoy a leisurely buffet breakfast that included omelets to order, scrambled eggs, cinnamon buns, chocolate chips muffins, bread pudding, and sausage. After brunch, the Senior As (fourteen and fifteen-year-olds) participated in an intramural lacrosse game. Lunch was chicken tenders with French fries. With more rain expected to arrive late afternoon, the camp postponed rest hour for an afternoon of fun carnival activities down the hill. We rented an obstacle course and a basketball hoop which were all a huge hit. These activities were augmented with classic carnival games like a duck guessing game in a large rain puddle, face-painting, miniature golf, “casino” card games, tic-tac-toe toss, and bowling with candy prizes for all. Late afternoon, the campers retreated to their cabins for some rest and to write one of their bi-weekly letters home before dinner. Dinner was the weekly Cabin Cookout of hamburgers, potatoes, and veggies. Evening activities included S’mores on the beach, tubing, and open areas of swimming, basketball, and field games. A highlight of the evening was the four cabins with the highest cabin clean-up scores the past two weeks being rewarded with a movie night that included special treats.
Thank you, as always, for sharing your boys with us at Camp Moosilauke. Please do not hesitate to contact Bill or Sabina if you have any questions.
Bill, Sabina, Ken, Ingrid, Preston, Jake, Quinn, and Charlotte