Get Outdoors This Block

By Josie McCauley

As the Colorado College campus floods with 2,000 students starting Block 1, some time in the outdoors is warranted. Take a look at upcoming Outdoor Resource Center trips and events this block to help you get a breath of fresh air.

There are a variety of events happening during Block 1 designed for beginners to explore potential outdoor interests. On Thursday, Aug. 29, there’s a beginners rock climbing trip to Garden of the Gods — no previous climbing experience is necessary and all gear will be provided. Students will climb some of the easier routes and be back on campus by dinnertime. 

Photo courtesy of Catalyst Archives

There are also two upcoming skill development clinics. The first, titled “Intro to Paragliding,” is on Wednesday, Sept. 4 and will provide an overview of the sport as well as an introduction to equipment. On Thursday, Sept. 12, another clinic will provide an introduction to fly fishing. This clinic will consist of a discussion involving basic terminology, equipment, and entomology, and will end with a chance for attendees to practice their casts at Autrey (Yampa) Field. 

Colorado College offers a variety of First-Year Outdoor Orientation Trips (FOOT), a long-held college tradition allowing for outdoor backpacking and hiking experiences over the first Block Break. There are currently seven different trips planned all throughout Colorado. One offers a backpacking trip to Conundrum Peak and Hot Springs for those interested in a mix of camping, hiking, and relaxing. 

Another explores the Weminuche Wilderness in the San Juan National Forest, particularly Squaw Lake and the Continental Divide Trail. Within the San Isabel and Pike National Forests, a group will also be taking a relaxed 10-mile hike of the Rough and Tumbling Creek Loop in the Buffalo Peaks Wilderness. 

For more advanced backpackers, there are some challenging options as well. A group will be hiking along Cross Creek in Gilman, Colo., and another will be exploring the Lost Creek Wilderness by way of the Goose Creek Loop. 

There is also an intermediate option, where students will climb Pikes Peak from the Catamount Center on the back of Pikes and descend via the Barr Trail into Manitou Springs. 

A final FOOT trip is geared toward students of color, who will traverse the Venable Lakes Route in the Sangre de Cristo Wilderness and embark on various day hikes with the potential to summit a couple 13,000 ft. summits. 

In addition to the FOOT trips, there is also an Aspen Bike Trip in which participants will bike more than 100 miles from Woodland Park to Aspen. The trip will be supported by CC Vans and include on-road mechanical assistance. Riders will be camping the first two nights and reach Aspen on Friday, after which they’ll spend two nights exploring Aspen and staying in lodges before being driven back to CC early Sunday morning. 

More information about each trip can be found via Summit using a CC student login, including itineraries, leader names and information, specifics on the trips and their activities, and packing lists. More information will be added as the events approach, so keep checking the page. Spots are limited, so signing up early is recommended in most cases.  

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