Program Description - Hermon & Meiron Groups - Session I
On ITTA, you will learn what it takes to live in the wilderness- carrying a backpack with all your gear, preparing your own food, sleeping outside or in a tent with 3-4 of your friends, and navigating your group through the hills, valleys, creeks and riverbeds of northern Israel. You will pray amidst Israel's natural beauty, enchanted by the sunrise and the crisp morning air. You will acquire survival skills such as setting & packing up camp efficiently, map and compass-reading, knot-tying, outdoor cooking & baking and more. And you will learn "Leave no Trace" outdoor skills, to enjoy your beautiful surroundings with a minimum of impact.
|Join Derech Hateva and get to know the land with your feet as you backpack along the famous "Israel Trail" on the Israel Trail Teen Adventure this summer! Average group size is 8-12 participants from around the world and Israel. Together, be inspired to discover, to grow and surpass your every limit.
Your journey begins up north as you cross the Hula Valley. With your belongings (a.k.a. your portable home) on your back you will walk close to 200 km (over a hundred miles) over the course of three weeks. You will cross many riverbeds and summit several of the north's highest peaks including the highest one, Mount Meiron, surrounded by blue skies, steep cliffs, many varieties of trees, flowers, soaring birds and native animals. You'll reach the shores of the Kinneret, enjoying its refreshing cool water; and hike in or near the Carmel mountain range, taking in stunning views of the Mediterranean Sea.
Teamwork and leadership will be important components of the program. As your group gains leadership skills and experience working together, you can expect the guides to give you more responsibility for leading yourself and your peers. You'll learn how to live and work closely with your fellow English and Hebrew-speaking peers, as you improve your language skills and make friends for life. Bring a tolerance for adversity and uncertainty, respect for other members, and a willingness to play hard and have fun.
While in the Galil, you will trade your heavy pack for a mountain bike, and enjoy the cool rush of wind as you bike on- and off the trail. On another day, you will learn all about ropes, harnesses, knots and carabineers - the basics of rock-climbing. Feel your body defy gravity as you climb up vertical cliffs and reach new heights.
Along the way, you may volunteer and participate in service projects, meeting the "locals" in communities we pass through and sharing elements of your experience. Projects may include farming/gardening, trail maintenance, community education and more.
After reaching the Carmel, we will get on a bus for the first time in about 21 days, travel down south for a night in a desert lodging center (Chan) and prepare for our desert trek. Before sunrise, we will venture into the wilderness with our desert guides and the camels. We will spend the next three days trekking through the desert alongside camels, as we graciously unload our packs off of our backs- and onto theirs. Learning about desert survival and culture, we may cook different types of "Bedouin-style" pita bread, fry edible chips from the "Maluach" plant and create soap from a desert bush.
We will spend three Shabbatot in the woods up north. We'll learn practical skills and halachot for creating an awesome Shabbat in nature, working in teams to build an eiruv and cook "Wilderness Challah" and other special foods.
Shabbat will be an exciting opportunity to chill together, reflect on the week that's past, and take the time to really enjoy the natural world around us and its quiet. With the time to daven, learn, sing, read, play and eat & sleep (a lot). Shabbat is often the highlight of our week and a well-earned break. Under a clear, star-filled sky, the three stars will indicate the time for havdallah and we will end Shabbat with anticipation of another exciting week on our journey.
For the last weekend, all groups will gather as one large group** to celebrate our final Shabbat together at a desert field school.
You will experience a living-breathing Judaism as never before. Through our custom-designed interactive curriculum and sourcebook, you will engage with relevant texts from the Tanach, the Gemara, Midrash, Chassidut, Jewish philosophy and other modern sources that relate directly to your experience. You will live all that you learn, and connect to the Land and People of Israel, seeing the texts that you learn come alive.
The Israel Trail Teen Adventure is your chance to find strengths you never thought you had, and to help friends do the same. We will grow together and face all of our challenges together. So get ready to breathe and inhale the fresh air around you… gear up for the summer of a lifetime!
To apply for ITTA, follow me > Visit the links to your left to learn more about ITTA. And, of course, feel free to contact us at any time.
** Male and female groups will be at separate field schools