Doug Robinson: The rite of passage known as trek

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  • Hockey Fan Miles City, MT
    June 26, 2014 9:34 a.m.

    I descend from a Martin Handcart Company survivor through my mother. In November 2002 when I spoke at my mother's funeral after she succumbed to multiple types of cancer, I likened her heroic--very heroic--battle against cancer to her great-grandmother's Martin's Cove experience. My mother's battle was her Martin's Cove. That ground is very sacred to me and to many other people. We have been there as a family two times, and my youngest daughter and I participated in the Trek with our stake several years ago.

    The Trek is re-enacted in many other places, not just at Martin's Cove. It's a valuable way to connect with our pioneer roots and legacy. And that applies to fifth-generation members of the Church as well as first-generation members of the Church.

  • twhiting San Tan Valley, AZ
    June 25, 2014 4:11 p.m.

    I love treks! Me and my husband had the honor of serving as a "Ma" and "Pa" years ago and it was amazing! My oldest son just finished his trek. It was great to hear him talk about many great experiences! These opportunities change individual's lives for the better and strengthen testimonies! I'm so grateful for all those who made it possible. A lot of work is involved! I loved the fireside that we were able to attend this last weekend that highlighted some of their experiences. Our stake president said it the best saying, "it was a privilege just to be able to share in their experiences."(paraphrased)

  • Go Big Blue!!! Bountiful, UT
    June 24, 2014 5:30 p.m.

    Our stake does a trek every 5 years. An incredible amount of planning goes into every aspect to protect the participants. There are leaders regularly checking on each family. Those that begin to develop health issues are picked up and are attended to by professional medical staff. There are regular stops for hydration. Everyone receives a well balanced diet. Ma & Pa's receive training on health issues including heat stroke, dehydration and blisters. It's top notch.

  • J in AZ San Tan Valley, AZ
    June 24, 2014 4:31 p.m.

    And here I thought that trek activities were banned a couple of years ago because of all the safety issues relatred to how they are administered at the local level. While the Church has sound activity safety rules, many derived from the safety policies of the Boy Scouts, they all seem to go out the window when the trek comes along. Walking on dangerous trails at night without proper safety gear and precautions, inadequate nutrition, and adult 'leaders' with no clue about outdoor leadership and safety. All contribute to a far more dangerous activity than is needful to accomplish the learning objectives.

    June 24, 2014 3:04 p.m.

    Just the kind of article I needed to read. I will be experiencing it first hand in less than two days, as my wife and I will be playing the role of "ma and pa" on our stake trek. Just preparing for it has been an eye-opener. But am looking forward to the experience and being able to share with the kids what our pioneer ancestors went through and learned.

  • Commonman HENDERSON, NV
    June 24, 2014 2:25 p.m.

    Dear Eliot,

    The pioneers did not "make it up." This is not fiction, but re-enactment. As a historian, I find that I understand better what caused people to do what amazing things they did, when I stand on the ground where they did it, and walk the trails they walked. It has helped me better face my own unavoidable trials with courage and equanimity. I heartily recommend it.

  • Go Big Blue!!! Bountiful, UT
    June 24, 2014 2:13 p.m.

    Last summer my 16 year old son left for trek. A few days later a tired and very polite and grateful young man returned to my home. It was a great experience.

    Don't worry, the xbox playing and iphone texting 16 year old eventually returned, but he had learned some important lessons pulling a handcart.

  • Flashback Kearns, UT
    June 24, 2014 1:49 p.m.

    And I thought you were going to talk about the 7 on 7 Football tournament at the Y on Saturday. And you thought no one recognized you.

  • Eliot Genola, UT
    June 24, 2014 1:33 p.m.

    Anytime I hear someone mention trek I find out the date and plan the family vacation for somewhere else. There are plenty of hard things young people can do that are useful without having to make one up.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    June 24, 2014 1:10 p.m.

    Stay off the roads!