“I’m looking forward to pretty much everything,” said Emily DeBoers, aiming her camera at the rest of the group.
A highlight of the weekend proved to be Aguilar, a Student Conservation Association intern.
Aguilar, who studies environmental sciences at Carleton College in Northfield, Minn., began his internship in June.
“Last night he found a huge beetle, and was showing it to us,” Bettie Chambers said.
It was a Ponders beetle, Aguilar chimed in, explaining that the specimen was the largest species of beetle living in the park.
The novice campers, of all ages, surrounded Aguilar throughout the weekend, listening intently as he answered questions about the surrounding flora and fauna. The topics for this hike: paintbrush flowers, bees and lilies.
“Russ (Aguilar) is like the dictionary for Mount Rainier,” Yona Chambers said.