In this Summer 2022 highlight, our Washington, D.C. & Houston group shares photos from their time in Shenandoah National Park. Enjoy!

Our time in Shenandoah National Park was incredible! Here are a couple of highlights, including a beautiful and insightful short essay by one of our students Vibhav!

“On Thursday, we started underground in the solution caves, moved up to the meadows to discuss biological processes and geology, and we ended under the stars. I can’t help but compare this to our journey as a species. We started as cave people, stuck underground and guiding our kin through fragile handprints on the walls, kind of like the repeating, unguided tones of the organ surrounded by unforgiving stalactites and stalagmites. Then, we moved upwards to the meadows, eating wild berries and watching pioneers grow from burned forests to preserve land, like the first farming humans after they discovered fire. Finally, under stars, we explored everything that came before us, but also focused on the recent presence/growth of the space sector, arguably the biggest key to our future. What a fantastic journey through the forces of nature, the universe, and us as a part of it all.” — Vibhav

Students holding blue Smithsonian Journeys flag on top of mountain.

Green field full of yellow flowers.

Big Meadow in Shenandoah National Park.

Boy looking over field of green.

Gabriel enjoying our guided hike through Big Meadow in Shenandoah National Park.

Woman smiling in front of group of students sitting on top of mountain.

We hiked to the top of the second highest peak in Shenandoah National Park!

Students standing in front of small orange rockets.

Launch pad!

Group of students holding sign that reads "Rocket Launch" with a red arrow pointing left.

Ready for launch!

Students sitting at table outside with rocket parts.

Marina, Izzy, Jake S. And Zoe building rockets.

Close up of student focusing on building rocket.

Making rockets in Shenandoah! Eva focusing on the details 🙂