Martinez is a long way from the small town of Dunbar, Scotland. But a group of students are taking the pilgrimage in honor of a famous Scot who made the same trip in the mid-19th century.
The fifth- and sixth-year students — or juniors and seniors to Americans — arrived Thursday, June 22. On Friday, they spent a jetlagged morning in Muir Woods followed by an afternoon stroll of the John Muir Historical Site under the guidance of Park Ranger Daniel Prial. Prial gave an enthusiastic tour, which students Emily Gilmour and Cheryl McCandlish said expanded their understanding of the man behind the name John Muir.
Gilmour and McCandlish are staying with Kris Russell, one of the many Martinez residents who are hosting the Scottish teenagers. As an introduction to the United States — and Martinez — Russell took the young women to the mall, the downtown, and for a day of watersports on the Carquinez Strait.
From Martinez, the students head over to Yosemite National Park.