DOC plans trips for spring break

by Anthony Robles | 2/23/17 2:00am

Many of the Dartmouth Outing Club’s sub-clubs will host trips this upcoming spring break, ranging from canoeing in Florida to canyoneering in Utah. Among the sub-clubs that will participate are the Ledyard Canoe Club, Dartmouth Mountaineering Club, Cabin and Trail and the Mountain Biking Club.

Ledyard president Michael Baicker ’17 said that Ledyard will hold two trips this break, one of which — whitewater kayaking — will be based out of Asheville, North Carolina, with day trips throughout both North Carolina and Tennessee. The trip, which will have around 35 participants, will last for the entirety of the break.

Ledyard’s flatwater canoeing trip will begin on the Okefenokee Swamp in Georgia before descending into Florida via the Suwannee River. The trip will run from Mar. 19 to Mar. 26, allowing the eight participants to visit home for a few days before the trip commences. Both trips were open to all levels of experience.

According to Baicker, the trips are mainly structured around canoeing and kayaking from morning to around mid-afternoon. After the day’s activity, the group gets together to cook dinner and set camp for the night. Baicker led a similar trip this past winter break in Everglades National Park located in southern Florida.

Meanwhile, DMBC will be taking six individuals – two trip leaders and four participants — to Pisgah National Forest located in the Appalachian Mountains of eastern North Carolina. Their trip will last 10 days from Mar. 15 to Mar. 25. Though open to beginners, biking experience was recommended for applicants.

Due to the proximity between the Ledyard trip and the DMBC trip, DMBC president Shuoqi Chen ’18 said the two groups have sometimes met up in the past to have dinner together.

The Dartmouth Mountaineering Club’s annual spring break trip this year will take around 25 individuals to the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, located near Las Vegas, Nevada, and will run from Mar. 17 to Mar. 24. This trip was open to all levels of experience.

“We go there every spring,” trip co-organizer Alexander Derenchuk ’19 said. “It’s great because it’s warm in March, and it’s one of the best places to go sport climbing in America.”

In the western half of the United States, Cabin and Trail will be conducting two trips focusing on backpacking and canyoneering. The backpacking trip will explore the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, located in southern Utah, from Mar. 15 to Mar. 25, with 13 people participating, trip co-leader Joby Bernstein ’17 said.

“There’s just so many different ecosystems out there that you can walk through on any given day, and yet, it’s kind of unheard of for most people,” Bernstein added. “It’s a really cool opportunity to go to the middle of nowhere and really get to experience some of the amazing assets that America has.”

Meanwhile, six individuals – two trip leaders and four participants - will participate in the canyoneering trip. The trip will be conducted on land owned by the Bureau of Land Management in Utah from Mar. 15 to Mar. 23, according to trip co-leader Matthew West ’17.

West has previously led two trips, one of which involved backpacking at Death Valley National Park in California, while the other also focused on canyoneering in Utah. West said that the main tasks of the leaders prior to the trips involve dealing with logistical material, such as applications, the itinerary and the planning of the routes.

“On the actual trip, the primary responsibilities are navigating us through the mountains without trails, making sure food happened and stuff like that,” West added. “I love taking groups of people outdoors, especially doing fun things, and from the applications of the people that applied, I think they’re all really going to enjoy canyoneering.”

Financial aid was available for all of the trips.

Chen is a former member of The Dartmouth staff.