Written By: District Local | Vancouver
The unknown called, and we answered.
This weekend, we went offline and #IntoTheUnknown with Chasing Sunrise and MEC Outdoor Nation. 50 strangers were taken on a secret, all-expenses paid trip into the wild – no further details were provided until arrival. Our correspondent, a dear friend and one of the lucky chosen 50, shares his experience:
The adventure begins.
2:45 a.m. wake up calls are early, even by our standards. But when it’s Chasing Sunrise setting the alarm, you don’t press snooze. So off we went to meet the group at 6 a.m to get the weekend started, destination unknown.
A few hours later, we pulled into Manning Park, which celebrates its 75th anniversary this season. It was BC Parks that turned to Chasing Sunrise and an assemblage of outstanding local sponsors to help make this adult summer camp happen – and this group was more than happy to jump in.
Welcome to Chase Camp.
Having found our tentmates in Chase Camp, we spent the afternoon getting to know each other over chilly lake swims, some intense pickup Ultimate Frisbee, California kickball, and leisurely bocce. Conversations and friendships flowed easily. None of us had met until we boarded the bus that morning. Our new friends were from all walks of life, and the stories and inspiration quicklyflowed: a biologist, an ultramarathoner, and a videographer; a guy who’d been a nanny in Malaysia, and an expert in dugout canoes from Duncan, via Indonesia; an adventurer off to Colombia, and an Australian living out of a van.
Forget tin can cooking and hotdogs. Our weekend’s Paleo menu, courtesy of Whole Foods and some hardworking chefs from Fuel Your Fire (a Paleo meal home delivery service), included Italian sausages,bbq porkchops, butternut squash, fresh fruits and salads. Early mountain climbs necessitate caffeine, and local Saltspring Coffee helped keep us warm and awake. Plant-based nutritious treats from Vegawere packed away to take along for what lay ahead.