Last weekend, we participated in our stake's 3 day pioneer trek. Jonathan and I were Pa and Ma to a family of 9 wonderful teenagers. They took turns pulling our handcart of possessions and camping gear for 20 miles along rail trails between Auburn and Raymond NH (after an opening meeting at the temple).
Our amazingly awesome trek family: Pa and Ma Dodge
Girls: Claudia, Meagan, Eliza and Aubrey
Boys: John, Forrest, Nate, David and Nick
We met our families at the temple in Belmont, MA and talked about the saints leaving Nauvoo after going to the temple and what temple covenants mean to us personally.
Getting the cart loaded and ready to roll from Lake Massebessic Park
Jonathan was sick for two days before we started hiking and I was worried he wouldn't be able to join us the first day, but he felt well enough by the time we started out and the first day was an easier pace.
Our first day of pulling. We got rained on in the afternoon after stopping for some pioneer games. The weather stayed warm though and our camping gear stayed dry.
The boys had the handcart loading down to science by the second day--evenly balanced with the water jug off the back and a back of snacks accessible in front. All our personal buckets and camping gear went in the cart each day.
The second morning the girls did a 3 mile women's pull on their own while the boys had mission training. It was hard pulling up the hills, but by helping each other out we all made it.
This is where we camped the second night in Candia--nick named Shangri La. It is privately owned land with a man-made pond, waterfalls, and grassy meadows. It was the ideal setting for this large group.
Here's Curtis' family. The Hogan are a couple in our ward. Curtis had a great time and was a cheerful hiker. He even tried to catch fish in the pond and square danced with me for a minute.
I don't have pictures of Trevor because he was in a different family, but we saw him participating on the periphery. I was so glad we were able to experience this together.