This weekend, a group of friends went down to the Garden of the Gods wilderness area of the Shawnee National Forest. We went in hopes to go camping, climbing, and ultimately to experience the 2017 solar eclipse right in the middle of the path of totality. When we came down from our campsite (about a three mile hike into the River-to-River trail) for water on Sunday, we soon realized that it would be a bad idea to leave the Garden of the Gods parking area in order to go climbing. Instead we ate a nice lunch in the picnic area, hiked through the observation trail (amazing!), and enjoyed the views and stars over a valley at our campsite. The eclipse was incredible, and certainly an experience I will remember for the rest of my life! We had the perfect spot on a bluff at our campsite to truly experience the wonder of a total solar eclipse.
Another great part of Monday, August 21 – birthday/eclipse s’mores! I purchased all of the fixings to make vegan s’mores on my birthday (August 20), but mistakenly failed to place the s’mores into the car with us (queue tears). Fortunately, for the benefit of all, my friend Bobby was meeting us later in the weekend and picked up a pack of vegan s’mores! They were such a treat, and the coolness from the eclipse sure made the s’mores extra tasty!