Expedition Log: Sept. 1

0530: Canoes arrive and students and do a great job of loading the boats; 0800 ceremony begins with Pres. Pribbenow, Mayor Coleman, and River Troubadour Larry Long, who sent us off with song.  Enthusiastic crowd of friends, family, and supporters; we set off with a flotilla of 8 additional voyageur canoes and paddled down to South St. Paul with flags flying. 1200 Flotilla participants were shuttled back to Harriett Island and expedition paddled to River Mile (RM) 823 for our first camp on a nice, open sandy spot on River Right. Eagles, osprey, pelicans, and limestone cliffs, with some conversation about local geology; passed 6 “through-paddlers” (go the length of the river) in kayaks and canoes.  Spirits good despite lack of sleep and very hot conditions; swim in the river was delicious; students have jumped right in with camp duties, and are excited about the trip, but a little apprehensive about the coursework and how to keep up with their studies. Brief campfire until the mosquitoes drove us into our tents, where we slept the sleep of the extremely exhausted.  Rain at night but all stayed dry. LOCATION