Oh, the life of a niner is never dull. One day they’re balancing on high ropes, and two days later they’re struggling to get out of bed at around 5 o’ clock in the morning for their Geography trip at the Forks of the Credit.

This year’s trip started off badly. The sky was dark and gloomy. We all crawled slowly towards our bus seats, and waited for the adventure yet to come. As the bus parted, “our favourite encyclopaedia”, Mr. van Bemmel, told us how our area used to be occupied for horse racing. And we only smiled and nodded with exhaustion, until we reached the point when we actually needed to take notes.

As the clouds scattered and the sun was revealed, at roughly 7:03 am, our hopes were raised. We all sung in the bus, grabbed an occasional snack, and took moving pictures along the way. First we visited the Cemetery of Wood Hill, where we found a grave with my first name engraved in the stone (who knew I was secretly a zombie?). When Mr. van Bemmel began explaining, everyone took out their papers faster than you could say “graveyard”. People waved their cellphones in the air, as if it were some Justin Bieber concert, and recorded his every word. As niners, we’re very naïve and cannot trust our memory skills.

Then, we arrived at our first hiking trail– where the real journey began. We all rushed out from the buses in excitement, partly because we hadn’t been to the washroom for a while (although when we actually saw the stalls, we all cringed in disgust).  As Mr. van Bemmel planted his hiking pole into the ground we all started walking along the dusty trail and watched for any bumps we could trip on. The view was breathe-taking! The mist sure gave the scenery a mysterious feel to it.

From the vast Lake Plains and Drumlins, to the Bailey bridge and the famous Bad Lands, we had experienced it all! However, the real fun began as we hiked towards the Nassagaweya Canyons. Rain poured heavily on us, and we all huddled into little cliques with whomever had an umbrella. All of our notes were drenched and wrinkled, our sneakers slid on the slick mud, we stumbled on overlapping roots, and skidded over moss-covered rocks. We were all hungry and thirsty, and gasped heavily as we climbed those steep inclinations. It was like another episode of Survivor!

Somehow, those brutal seven and a half  hours went by pretty quickly. We will always cherish those hilarious moments, and laugh back at them once we survive Algonquin next year.