Finding New Friends Along the Trail

Finding New Friends Along the Trail

You never know who you might meet in the Great Outdoors.

For a group of teenagers from Kearns, Utah, it happened to be the governor of our great state. And, as chance would have it, a lifelong friendship was made that day.

In early September, Utah Governor Spencer J. Cox spent three days in the High Uintas Wilderness with some friends. "I hadn't been away from my phone for more than a day in almost 15 years," Cox said, so the trip was long overdue. They hiked, fished, and just enjoyed the beauty of nature as they took time to relax and unplug from our digitally dominated world.

As they were leaving, while traversing Hades Pass, Cox and his friends happened upon several young men (and their stalwart dog, Oso) who also were making their way out. After seeing them a few times on the trail, they got to talking, and it turns out this group of friends really enjoyed hiking and camping together whenever they had the chance. In fact, together they were carrying a well-loved (but very large and very HEAVY) tent, along with backpacks and other gear that had clearly been used a lot over the years.

When one of the boys experienced a malfunction with his backpack, Cox and his friends stepped in to help lighten their load by carrying their tent back to the trailhead (where they also helped them change a flat tire on their car). The group exchanged numbers and continued to keep in touch even after their chance encounter.

A group of people in front of a monument.

A few weeks later, Cox invited the boys over to Kearns Mansion for a special surprise: brand new tents, sleeping bags, backpacks, and water systems donated by TETON Sports so that they can continue to enjoy Utah's Great Outdoors for years to come.

A group of people eating together at a table in the Utah Governor's Mansion.

As Governor Cox said in a recent Facebook post, "There are very few coincidences in life." Here at TETON Sports, we believe everyone, everywhere should be able to get outdoors and enjoy life, and we are proud to play a small part in such an incredible story.