Springdale, S’mores, & Scavenger Hunts: Adventures on the 2022 Zion Trip
From October 28 to October 30, a group of our outdoorsy Renegades partook in a grand adventure! Each year, Nevada State High School takes fifty students on a weekend trip to Zion National Park to explore the beautiful state of Utah and feast their eyes on some of our nation’s most spectacular views. Over the course of the three days, students participated in a college tour, hikes, and teambuilding exercises. They returned home with new friends, new experiences, and memories that will last a lifetime. Read on to learn more about this hallmark event and how you could come along for the ride next fall.
“There is nothing so American as our National Parks.”
President Franklin D. Roosevelt
Day 1: Active Learning, Active Life
The first stop on our journey was Utah Tech University for a complete guided tour! Utah Tech University is a public university in St. George, Utah offering about 240 programs of study. We received a warm welcome from the UT Student Ambassadors at the Holland Centennial Commons before exploring the campus’ common areas, library, academic buildings, and dorms. Students also learned about UT’s application process and student life as we walked the beautiful grounds. After the tour, we visited the cafeteria for a quick bite before hitting the road.
Upon arrival at the Springdale & Zion Canyon Visitor Center, students were given their Zion scavenger hunt assignments and were able to stretch their legs and pick up a few souvenirs. Students started their scavenger hunts before we headed deeper into the park for our first hike. Surrounded by red cliffs and trees on all sides, our convoy made its way through the Zion switchbacks and tunnels. What a site!
Our lodging included two vacation homes at the Zion Ponderosa Resort. Once settled in, we ended the evening with dinner and one of our favorite traditions: The Zion Olympics! Split into teams of 10, students fought for first place in fun activities including a human tangle and a balloon walk!
“In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.”
Day 2: Exploring the Park
The early bird gets the worm! On day two, our Renegades were up and ready to start their adventures. Students had the option of enjoying the resort’s amenities and excursions or strapping on their hiking boots and taking on Observation Point Trail.
At the resort, students went horseback riding, challenged each other in paint ball, and even went on exciting RV tours around the park! Students were able to eat, drink, and be merry on the Ponderosa grounds—relaxing at the café or playing basketball and other games. A hop, skip, and a jump away, students who opted to do the Observation Point hike made their way to their destination. After hiking 3.5 miles, students ate their lunches and took in one of the most stunning views Zion National Park has to offer. After a much-appreciated rest, they made their way back to the starting point to end their 7-mile roundtrip journey.
Later that evening, students enjoyed a spaghetti dinner and various activities at the vacation homes. Some played board games while others watched films on the big screen and even enjoyed a nice soak in the hot tub! And, of course, it wouldn’t have been an adventure trip without a good’ol campfire! Students made s’mores for dessert before bringing the evening to a close.
“These are the people’s parks owned by young and old.”
President Harry S. Truman
Day 3: On the Road Again
On day three, it was time to head home! We enjoyed our last breakfast in the house, announced the scavenger hunt winners, and awarded the Zion Trip Superlative Awards before hitting the road. On the way to campus, we made one last stop in St. George for lunch. By the early afternoon, we were home sweet home.
“Any day spent in a national park is a good day.”
Giving students the opportunity to participate in college tours and engaging student activities is just one of the ways Nevada State High School successfully transitions students from high school to college. At public charter school, 11th and 12th grade students take real college classes while building the social and life skills necessary to thrive in a college environment. Would you like to join the Renegade family? Applications for Spring 2023 are now OPEN! Apply at earlycollegenv.com.