4967
Minnesota
Discover the Wonder of Wolves With Your Grandchild
Become part of the pack at the International Wolf Center as you and your grandchild learn about animal tracking, local wildlife, lupine behavior and enjoy a picnic in Superior Forest.
Rating (4.75)
Program No. 4967RJ
Length
6 days
Starts at
799
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6 days
5 nights
15 meals
5 B 5 L 5 D
DAY
1
Arrival / Orientation
Ely, MN
D
Outdoor Learning Center

Afternoon: Plan to arrive at the Outdoor Learning Center between 3:30 PM and 5:00 PM. (A shuttle from Duluth is available.) Receive a finalized schedule, welcome packet and nametag during registration. Settle into your lakeside living quarters and explore our site on picturesque Fall Lake.

Dinner: Informally meet the other participants over dinner, catered on-site and eaten on the lakeside deck, weather permitting.

Evening: Your official welcome and program orientation is when you will meet your instructors and the other grandparents and grandchildren through an introductory activity.

DAY
2
International Wolf Center Field Trip / North Woods Ecology Program & Activities / Wolf Communication with Howling Field Trip
Ely, MN
B,L,D
Outdoor Learning Center

Activity note: Full exploration of the International Wolf Center requires walking relatively short distances; participants of the howling field trip should plan to walk up to a quarter-mile, but likely much less.

Breakfast: Breakfasts (and the remaining dinners) are provided by Vermilion Community College. By bus (or van), travel to the campus to enjoy a hearty breakfast.

Morning: Visit the International Wolf Center and meet one of the Center's resident packs of wolves to learn more about how wolves communicate, play, hunt and eat. Explore the spectacular Wolves and Humans Exhibit, which won awards for the Science Museum of Minnesota. Hands-on displays show the fascinating, age-old dance between wolves and humans. Learn how a wolf howls or take a turn at a wolf survival video game.

Lunch: After your morning's introduction to wolves, meet up with the rest of the group to eat a sack lunch on site at the International Wolf Center.

Afternoon: Grandparents and grandchildren learn to identify prominent trees, flowers, and geologic formations of northern Minnesota. Gain a new perspective on the interconnections of this unique ecosystem through games, demonstrations, and discussion. This session includes moderate walking.

Dinner: Over dinner at the college campus, discuss things learned in the program so far.

Evening: Howling is just one way that wolves communicate. After an introduction to several wolf communication patterns, head into the woods with a naturalist to howl to a local pack. This naturalist-led program includes an indoor introduction followed by an outdoor field trip.

DAY
3
Beavers & Wolves Field Trip / Wildlife Navigation with Orienteering / Predator & Prey Program
Ely, MN
B,L,D
Outdoor Learning Center

Activity note: All three sessions today contain a mix of indoor lecture, and outdoor walking over somewhat rugged terrain.

Breakfast: Enjoy a hearty breakfast.

Morning: Visit the home of one wolf prey animal, the beaver. Learn how this animal, uniquely adapted to its watery environment, can successfully evade wolves and other predators much of the time. This beaver ecology and habitat field trip includes a moderate walk over some rugged terrain.

Lunch: Enjoy a noon sack lunch picnic.

Afternoon: Learn about wildlife navigation and the art and skill of orienteering as you navigate your way through the woods with the use of a compass on this afternoon program. Step-by-step instructions prepare you to keep on track as you follow the orienteering course. About an hour of free time is scheduled to follow.

Dinner: Compare notes from the day over dinner with your fellow classmates.

Evening: What do wolves around the world eat? What adaptations do wolves have to help them in capturing and eating what they do? Wolves lead a feast-and-famine existence. Learn how they can hunt enough prey to feed the pack. Session includes predator/prey games such as "Muskox Maneuvers" for grandchildren and interested grandparents.

DAY
4
Wolf Management or Play Preparation / Wolf Research / Wolf Folklore & Craft Time
Ely, MN
B,L,D
Outdoor Learning Center

Activity note: Today's activities include limited to moderate walking.

Breakfast: Enjoy a hearty breakfast.

Morning: Grandparents will explore wolf management issues, while grandchildren will pursue a number of wolf related activities and preparation for a final play performance. Wolf management has been a hot debate in Minnesota. Discuss a landmark decision-making process and learn how wolves have been managed, past and present. Uncover the complex issues of future wolf management during a group decision-making activity.

Lunch: Enjoy a noon sack lunch picnic.

Afternoon: The use of radio tracking has been a monumental improvement in the quality and quantity of wolf research. A brief discussion of research history and methods is followed by demonstration with radio collars, antennae and receivers. Try your hand at using the same equipment used by wildlife researchers. Mapping is an important part of tracking wolves. Attempt to pinpoint the location of radio-collared wild wolves after learning the fundamentals of mapping.

Dinner: Enjoy dinner.

Evening: Historically, how have people viewed the wolf? Learn of the extreme views held by different cultures. Some myths are based on truth and some on fiction. Create your own wolf myth and present it to the group. Session is followed by craft time devoted to creating wolf related projects, such as a plaster casting of a wolf track.

DAY
5
Kawishiwi Falls Interpretive Hike / Free Time / Evening at the International Wolf Center
Ely, MN
B,L,D
Outdoor Learning Center

Activity note: Today is the most active of all the days as it includes about a mile hike over somewhat rocky and hilly terrain.

Breakfast: Enjoy a hearty breakfast.

Morning: Visualize Minnesota geology and identify common trees and wildflowers. Unfold mysteries in the signs animals leave behind. This interpretive hike to a view of the Kawishiwi Falls is about a mile in length over semi-rugged terrain.

Lunch: Enjoy a trail-side sack lunch in a beautiful spot next to a waterfall.

Afternoon: After an early afternoon return, enjoy the remainder of your afternoon pursuing activities on your own.

Dinner: Over dinner, enjoy the camaraderie of the other grandparents and grandchildren.

Evening: Return to the International Wolf Center for another observation of the resident pack. During the summer, wolves tend to be more active in the evening when the temperatures are cooler. Also have the opportunity to view the film, "Ambassador Wolf Pack".

DAY
6
Children's Wolf Performance / Wolf Jeopardy / Wrap up / Departure
Ely, MN
B,L

Breakfast: Enjoy a hearty breakfast.

Morning: While grandchildren put finishing touches on their "Wolf Performance" grandparents have about an hour of free time. Final program activities include the Children's Wolf Performance and a lively game of Wolf Jeopardy. This game is sure to be the real test of the wolf knowledge you gained over the course of the week. The wrap-up includes the opportunity for a group photo.

Lunch: The final meal included in this program is an 11:30 AM sack lunch at the Outdoor Learning Center.

Afternoon: Be checked out of your cabin by 1:00 PM.






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