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Leif Larson is an 18 year-old freshman from Milaca, Minnesota, who will be attending Pacific University in Forest Grove, Oregon, where he is currently undecided with an interest in biology or outdoor education. After attending ice ball, Leif was interested in becoming an intern at the Wilderness Center this summer.
He first heard about the center through word-of-mouth from his dad. The mosquitoes here enjoy the taste of Leif’s blood, which has resulted in him acquiring the nickname “tasty boy.” Dodging mosquitoes has been Leif’s greatest challenge at the center so far.
Leif enjoys that the center is located outside of Ely, near the Boundary Waters. “I don’t think you could choose a better location for an endeavor like this.”
Before coming up to Ely this summer, Leif spent some time in southern Chile and Argentina. “Having water that comes from a spring a mile away is like a luxury,” he said, after returning from his backpacking trip in Patagonia, where fresh water was hard to come by.
“I wish people could understand exactly what Will’s vision is. People might have a vague idea of what the place represents with catchphrases such as ‘bold ideas’ on the website.”
“Will has it all in his head, and he knows what he wants.” Leif said.
Leif didn’t know what to expect when he first arrived at the center. He is content with how well the interns and apprentices seem to mesh living together in this community. Leif has grown fond of Johnny Ray, the center’s photographer, who is a kind-hearted soul with a lot of wisdom and great stories. He also appreciates Jenna for her positivity and kind demeanor, and is looking forward to learning more about everyone here.
Leif enjoys the synchronized lack of structure at the center. Everyday is a new day and you don’t really know what you’re going to do.
Tacos, spaghetti and pancakes have been Leif’s favorite dishes so far. During his free time, Leif enjoys jumping in the lake, napping, sitting around, canoeing and reading. The best book he’s read so far is Monkey Wrench Gang.
Leif describes himself as intellectual, self-motivated, and bootylicious. He is an ordained minister through the universal life church, and the others can rely on Leif for his sense of humor, well-timed movie quotes and calm demeanor.

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