Everyone was loaded up (literally) and ready to hit the trail full of energy.
The wild flowers were just gorgeous!
This year Birch introduced a new idea. Before leaving on the hike the boys were each asked to read Alma chapter 46 where Captain Moroni, a prophet, makes a "Title of Liberty" as a call to arms for his people to defend their country, family, freedom, peace and religion. The kids all had a chance to declare what they are STANDING FOR and write it on their homemade flag.
Family, Jesus, The Gospel, America, My Mom, Missionaries, and Freedom are a few of the words the boys wrote on the flag.
I sure love this band of brothers!
Just look at these answers -- what warriors we are raising!
Birch shared his spoon with one of the boys who broke it, so he scooped up his breakfast oatmeal with half a spoon. I'd say I married one awesome guy that happily takes seven kids on a backpacking trip by himself and throws in some spirituality too! I asked Birch what the hardest part of being the only adult on the trip (I'm sure Mark was there in spirit); his response -- digging all the holes in the morning for everyone to poop in. Seriously, he had to dig TEN holes!! Now that is some major poopin!
Taking a break on the Jerky Log in memory of Mark Cox.
Near Sourdough Gap.
My other boys...the Cox boys
Love these pictures of Chase, Nate, and Coop
A dip in Sheep Lake is required for every camper.
Birch said that at first the boys were all "fighting" over who got to hold the flag but by the end of the trip no one wanted a turn.
Coop did a great job keeping up with the older boys. Birch said he was so antsy to always move on to the next thing/hike since he has had years of hearing about the backpacking trip he wanted to do it all! The contents of Cooper's pack included pj's, underwear, his swimsuit, and chips.
Nate -- what a stellar kid!
The highlight of the trip is always roasting Starbursts over a campfire which goes undocumented since this year's fire was illegal. These boys came home TIRED and HAPPY!
Can't view the movie? Check out: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hMEIQBNdnTg&feature=share&list=UUJNS04EBDgXey9WL-P75KgA