May 4, 2017- The Grand Mesa Youth Services Center Hiking Club ventured out on a new trail, the Rattlesnake Arches. The trip included a few new youth that had previously struggled, but found interest in the hiking club and saw it as an incentive to work hard. By achieving goals in their treatment and education programming, they earned a spot on the hiking club, allowing the
youth to leave the facility for the first time.
Early in the morning, the youth and staff packed their lunches and water, and set out to hike over 15 miles while climbing over 3,000 vertical feet of rugged terrain. During the hike both youth and staff strengthened their relationships while working together, helping each other, and sharing snacks--which made for great memories and a very enjoyable experience. While some questioned whether or not they could physically finish the hike, the youth and staff team supported each other and encouraged each other until everyone made it back to the trail head. The feeling of accomplishment the youth felt is something they are still talking about days later.