At the end of May, I was asked to be the female teacher on a grade 9 Outdoor Ed camping trip to Drumheller, Alberta. I agreed to go and somehow managed to unofficially sneak Kyle and Guns along (Kyle drove down with Guns and met up with us, then camped and hiked with us). We had 3 days of fun, fun, fun. We visited the Royal Tyrell Museum, bushwhacked through the badlands/golf course, hiked (mostly along the highway) to Horse Thief Canyon, and made it home without any major injuries. We got to take Gunnar swimming, he almost conquered his fear of dogs (not quite, but we're getting there) and he discovered that baby bunnies are fast and don't like the screeching sound he makes when he gets excited. Overall, Gunnar and Kyle were troopers, and we consider the Gunnar trial camping trip a success.
I also learned a few things:
1) grade 9 boys like little kids just as much as grade 9 girls do. They kicked soccer balls to Gunnar, kept him out of the fire, rescued him from Ben, the giant dog, and even let him interupt football games for a quick pass or throw.
2) 3 hours is wayyyyy too long to allow 26, 14 year olds to "explore" a treacherous cactus filled canyon
3) Watching Gunnar chase baby bunnies around the campsite made for some good entertainment
4) Kids are dumb enough to think they can survive on beans for 3 days straight (they can't by the way, by day 3 they also need bacon)
5) Bacterial eye infections and camping don't mix