On a cold Saturday morning in late January, Centaurus High School CAP class students and instructors headed up a winding road through Nederland to Brainard Lake Recreation Area. Our sense of foreboding grew as we saw mountain tops blown free of snow and the trees bending to the wind’s will. We opened the doors to the van and nearly blew away.
With numb fingers we fastened our snowshoes. When we trudged into the forest and into the shelter of the trees our spirits rose. Pulling the sled through the trees’ we found a clearing perfect for building a snow shelter. As soon as we took off our snowshoes we were descending to our waists. We were so ravenous we started on lunch part one before we even started building the shelter. After we piled the snow for the shelter, some students started building their own caves while others relaxed and began melting snow for hot chocolate. It was so cold that it took over an hour for the snow to melt. We dug a beautiful quinzhee shelter with room enough for all the students (despite the renegade log that appeared in the middle.)
Before we knew it, it was time to pack up and do snow science with our teacher, Mr. Wood. But first, we joyfully annihilated the snow shelters so we left no trace. Laughing and full of chocolate, we made our way back to the van and civilization.
Thank you to Nature Kids Lafayette for continuing to make this partnership possible!
Written by CAP class students: Ariana, Nataly, Jackson, Ryan and Tristan
See photos from our trip here!