6th grade Mother Lode Camping Trip

In this issue of The Dolphin Tail, we are featuring submissions from three 6th graders who wrote about the Mother Lode field trip. Keep scrolling to see all three essays.


Mother Lode 1By 6th grade contributor Kathy Nguyen

I went to Mother Lode for 3 days and 2 nights, and it was an exciting trip. The things I experienced were new to me, such as the High Rope Scores Challenges and going to Otter Island. I also loved the food because it was delicious.

There are four High Rope Scores Challenges. You don’t have to do all the challenges, but you at least have to do one. I did all of the challenges. One challenge is the Leap of Faith. It’s when you have to climb a 50-foot tree, and jump from a platform on the tree to try and hold on to a gray bar hanging from the tree. I tried it and it was amazing. At first it looks scary, but when you do it, it isn’t scary. Sometimes people call you, and you are used to looking, so you look down. You could be scared when you look down, and then you don’t want to do it anymore.

The second challenge was rock climbing. You can challenge yourself by using one color. For example, if you choose the color blue, you can only step on the blue stones. However, stepping on other color stones doesn’t affect you. The hardest color was rainbow because you have to take a huge step.

The third challenge was the balance beam. The balance beam is when you climb a 10 foot tree and stand on the log. When you moved, the log shakes because it’s a little loose. A person will tell you what to do on the beam, and you can either pass or do it.

The fourth challenge was the pipe dream. It’s when you have to walk on a thin line and you need to pick a partner or friend to go on the line with you. For example, one person grabs on to one pole and the other one tries reaching to the other pole with the other person’s help. This challenge is about teamwork since you have to help each other out. When I did it, it was really scary because the line was slippery, and getting across was hard. It was also hard since you have to hold each other’s hand.


By 6th grade contributor Dillon Wong

On my Mother Lode trip, I enjoyed many activities, but the activities I liked the most were the food, the water activities, and going to sleep.

The food at Mother Lode was fresh and delicious. My favorites were hot chocolate, ice cream, and burritos. They made homemade hot chocolate, and sometimes they have a long line for whipped cream for your hot chocolate. On one day, they served dessert, ice cream, at night. There were two choices of ice cream, Cookies and Cream or Chocolate Mint. I had Cookies and Cream with whip cream, chocolate syrup, and raspberry jam. For dinner, I liked the burrito because you can choose what you want to put on your burrito. I put so many toppings in my burrito, I had to use a fork, which I had never done before.

Another favorite activity was doing things in the water, such as panning for gold and swimming and crossing the river. When I went gold panning, I didn’t find any gold, but I still had fun. When I was walking in the river, the water was at my waist level, but when I stepped in a hole, the water was up to my neck. It was freezing, but I got used to it. Swimming was challenging for me because I wore a life vest and shoes, which weighed me down. It was difficult but fun. The river rocks on the bottom of the river were slippery but I got used to it. I did slip once and cut my knee on a rock.

Last of all, sleeping in a four-man puny tent was awesome. It was cold outside, but it was warm in my red sleeping bag. My tent mates were Tom, Gabe, and Maksim. I would give the tent a 4-star rating because the river was so loud, I woke up in the middle of the night. The beds were stretchers, but they were comfortable. There were two bunks and I slept on one of the bottom bunks.

I think this experience at Mother Lode was epic for me. It felt like I was a Boy Scout because I learned how to cross a river, and I slept in a tent. I think this trip was enchanting and I will never forget it.  


By 6th grade contributor Juan Buzon

Eating homemade food, playing silly board games, and sleeping in a tiny tent with three other people. Those are the memories I take away from this year’s Mother Lode trip.

The food there was delicious! It was a huge buffet. My personal favorite was the D.I.Y (Do It Yourself) burritos. I put rice, chicken, lettuce, salsa, and sour cream in the flour tortilla, and it was the greatest burrito I’ve had in a really long time. We had a massive amount of food for breakfast every morning. I really enjoyed the soft, warm pancakes and the steaming hot cocoa in the stormy, cold morning weather. Overall, I think the homemade food was great, 10/10.

Second of all, the board games were really silly and funny, and we joked a lot. We played Apples to Apples and Liar’s Dice. My friends and I had a great time playing Apples to Apples with hilarious cards. Liar’s Dice was fun because it was a 50/50 chance of you being right or not. Some people had a good poker face, and some not so much. I did well, but sometimes I laughed when I was faking.

Lastly, the sleeping experience was really comfortable. The first day, when we got there at around 8:00 a.m., we got to make our beds and see who we were sleeping with. I lucked out because I got two of my friends, Mateo and Nick, and Mateo’s dad. I set up my bed by putting my sleeping bag on the cot, my Spider-Man blanket on top of the sleeping bag, my pillow where the opening of the sleeping bag was, and my emoji pillow next to the other pillow. The first night was comfy, but I woke up at 2:00 in the morning. It was cold, and not just a chill, but it was about 15 degrees cold! So I bundled up really tight and went back to sleep. When I got up, it was freezing, but they gave us warming hot cocoa.

Overall my experience at Mother Lode was wonderful. The games were amazing, the food was filling, and sleeping was really comfortable. I say it’s a solid 8/10.