About to head out for a staff/board hike led by Kurt. (Anne Pogoriler)
I’ve been interning at CEC for the last 9 months and although I’ve been invited on several exciting outings with the organization, I’ve yet to make it on a trip (I know what you’re thinking – what the heck is wrong with me!). Well, this past weekend I finally got to take part in their annual board and staff retreat down in beautiful Marble, CO at the Beaver Lake Retreat. We met everyone bright and early in Morrison, loaded up our gear and car pooled through the spectacular I-70 corridor up towards Glenwood Springs. After feeding the troops, we delved into an extensive and informative staff meeting. CEC works on a wide array of environmental issues in Colorado, and each staff member brings a particular expertise to these issues. During the meeting, I obtained a deeper understanding of how impassioned and dedicated these individuals are about protecting and preserving our incredible state. It really reverberated the sense of excitement I feel about getting to work with an organization that makes such a resounding impact on our communities. We concluded the day with an amazing dinner fit for kings and some great conversation with some of Colorado’s finest.
Crystal River Valley near Marble, CO (Sasha Nelson)
We kicked off the next morning with the Board meeting. The topics discussed amongst staff and board was riveting and on the forefront of conversations for many Colorado residents. Once the board meeting concluded, Kurt Kunkle, CEC’s Wilderness Campaign Coordinator, took us on a scenic hike up the Hayes Creek Proposed Wilderness, which is part of the Hidden Gems proposal that Kurt has been working fervently on. It was surely one of the most beautiful areas I’ve seen in Colorado. At the top of the hike was the most spectacular view of the West Elk range. For me, this was the highlight of the trip. Seeing some of the tangible evidence of what the organization fights for everyday to protect. After the hike, a couple of us took a death-defying drive up to the breath-taking Crystal Mill. The peril and danger of driving on such a narrow, rocky road was totally worth it! All in all, I can say that although I missed out on several opportunities to travel with CEC in the past, this trip was hands down one of the greatest weekends exploring Colorado that I’ve ever had. Huge thanks to everyone for letting me tag along and take part in such an amazing retreat.