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The Westcoast Connection Blog

Life Changing Experiences

Welcome to the Canyons – California & The Canyons

Bright eyed and bushy tailed we arrived in Las Vegas ready for a thrilling ride to the ‘stratosphere’. Trip members had the choice between three exhilarating, gut-wrenching rides. Rachel and Amanda had the ride of their life shooting up on the Big Shot with a view of Vegas at over 1000 feet. The Insanity ride got Sam and Ariela screaming as they were suspended over Vegas.

Vegas brought many more attractions, including the Bellagio water show, which left all the trip members, mesmerized, the Forum shops and the New York New York rollercoaster. Trip members were shocked and excited about how the rollercoaster flipped upside down while moving inside and outside of the famous hotel – they could not stop talking about it.

One of the highlights was the time spent using the amazing facilities at our hotel – the group loved the lazy river and wave pool. Kate, Emily and Natalie relaxed on their tubes as they moved with the river and soaked up the sun. Jake, Josh, Drew and Grant played several water games and Amanda and Sabrina were often the victims of their craziness. Melissa and Laura cuddled into one tube and relaxed until the boys interrupted them.

After two incredible days in Sin City we were off to Bryce Canyon.  On the way we drove through Zion Park which was breathtakingly beautiful.  it was really neat when the rangers had to stop traffic in order to let our bus go through the tunnel built right into the mountain.

Before arriving at our campsite, we stopped off at the Chuckwagon Cookout for dinner where we had the honor of acting in our own Western movie. The trip members were dressed in costumes and embraced the roles they were given. Sabrina should have received an Oscar for her portrayal of a coyote howling at the moon while Harris and Abby were a picture perfect pioneer couple doing housework. David, the “bad cowboy”, had an altercation with Grant the “good cowboy” which was soon intervened by the soldiers and Indians.  It was hysterical!

One the way back to the campsite, we surprised the group announcing a Color War competition over which social media tool is better: Instagram or Snapchat. They were split into two teams – Blue and Red – and the battle began.  Even our trusty bus driver Brian got involved!

The following day, we hiked into Bryce Canyon and got fantastic pictures in front of the gorgeous mountains and canyon. The trip members were amazed by the views and couldn’t believe what they were seeing was real. Even though the hike back up the Canyon was a challenge for some, the trip members had great positive attitudes and worked hard. Upon returning to our campground, the trip members couldn’t wait to jump in the pool with their clothes on to refresh themselves and earn points for their team.

We continued with Color War activities for the rest of the afternoon.  Everyone really enjoyed the apache in which representatives of each team competed in several tasks to earn points for their teams.  Simone, Adrian, Grant and Courtney stepped up to the plate for the first challenge, They had to eat 5 salted crackers then whistle twinkle twinkle little star. This may sound easy but it proved to be a difficult task and Simone and Courtney were able to steal points for their team. The next challenge required participants Drew, Natalie, Rachel, Ariela to stuff marshmallows into their mouth and sing happy birthday to our birthday girl Simone. After a close match, the next challenge got a little messier, as we whipped up another competition (literally) including Sabrina and Laura. Without using their hands, the girls had to dig out M&Ms from a plate of whipped cream.

The participants took the next challenge quite seriously: they had to transport water from one side of the campsite to the other. Sounds simple enough, right? Well here’s the catch: their cups had holes in the bottom and the only rule was that they were not allowed to carry the cup in their hand and block the holes. The group was quite creative. Sam, Kate, Josh and Amanda made several trips with the cups on their head while others like Jake, David and Margaux stored the water in their mouths and filled their buckets. Spectators had a great time cheering and laughing as their teammates worked hard and sacrificed themselves for the prize.

Needless to say, our participants worked up quite the appetite, which worked out perfectly as we approached the watermelon contest. Although, Abby and Delaney put up a good fight, the mentally prepared duo of the growing boys Jake and Harris devoured the competition.  The next two activities required the participation of the full teams. The orange relay was hysterical, as the trip remembers were neck and neck all the way to the finish line. Then finally, we finished off the apache with a cross the lava challenge that entailed a lot of teamwork, focus and determination.

That night, the trip members played Make Me Laugh around the campfire. Hilarious shoutouts go to Sabrina, Drew, David, Delaney, Jake as they were able to make each other and others laugh instantly.

To end Color War, we had each team sing one of the morning songs in which we judged them based on enthusiasm and volume. All in all, the trip members had a lot of fun over the last few days and we’re all extremely excited for a great final stretch of our adventure.

California & The Canyons at Bryce Canyon

The Westcoast Blogger