Trips will end at Skiway lodge, not Moosilauke

by Mika Jehoon Lee | 5/25/17 2:10am


The new Moosilauke Ravine Lodge will not be completed in time to host First-Year Trips in the fall.

by Paula Mendoza / The Dartmouth

This year, Dartmouth Outing Club’s First-Year Trips will culminate in an overnight stay at the McLane Family Lodge at the Dartmouth Skiway because the construction of the new Moosilauke Ravine Lodge will not be completed in time.

Construction at Moosilauke Ravine Lodge began last fall after the 2016 Trips program.

In a Feb. 16 article in The Dartmouth, DOC director of outdoor programs Dan Nelson ’75 said construction was scheduled to finish in time for this year’s Trips program. Nelson said in an interview that those involved in the construction project were notified of its delay in mid-May.

“We knew from the very beginning that it was a very ambitious construction schedule, and all the progress reports about the [Moosilauke Ravine] Lodge stated that,” Nelson said.

Nelson added that the Outdoor Programs Office, DOC and other offices are planning activities that would take place at the newly-constructed Lodge during fall term so that first-year students can be introduced to it during their first term at the College.

In a joint interview with Trips director Doug Phipps ’17, associate director Apoorva Dixit ’17 said she was initially disappointed when she found out about the construction delay. However, Dixit said the directorate was not “taken aback” by this news because it has been preparing and discussing a contingency plan for several months.

Karampreet Kaur ’15 created the contingency plan as an Outdoor Programs Office emergency preparedness coordinator, according to Phipps. Kaur was the First-Year Trips director in 2015.

The McLane Family Lodge presents both logistic advantages and challenges, Phipps said. Its proximity to campus and relatively large size compared to the Moosilauke Ravine Lodge make the coordination of the Trips program much easier, he noted.

Additionally, the Wi-Fi at the McLane Family Lodge is more accessible, facilitating better communication between Croo captains. However, the directorate will need to draw new bus and hiking routes to and from the McClane Family Lodge, Phipps said.

“But all things considered, it’s really nice that Trips will end at a place that is less than half the distance away from Hanover than the [Moosilauke Ravine Lodge] is,” Phipps said.

Lodj Croo co-captain Sarah Salzman ’18 said the large capacity of the dining area at the McLane Family Lodge will allow for one combined dinner instead of two, which has been the norm in past years. According to the Dartmouth Skiway’s website, the dining hall of the McLane Family Lodge can house nearly 200 people, compared to only 84 at Moosilauke.

Serving one dinner can also create more time for events in the evening, such as a scavenger hunt or arts and crafts activities, Lodj Croo co-captain Milan Chuttani ’18 said.

Chuttani added that the evening programs could end a little earlier and make the Trips schedule less exhausting.

“This way, trippees can participate in all of the evening programs and not feel like they are missing out if they go to bed,” Chuttani added.

Despite the new location, the purpose of the reunion will not be different, Phipps said.

“The purpose of the Lodge, either [Moosilauke Ravine Lodge] or the [McLane Family Lodge], has always been to reunite sections and allow people to meet people beyond their trips now that they have a comfortable base to reach out from,” Phipps said. “That is going to stay the same.”

Chuttani echoed Phipps’ sentiments, emphasizing that the Trips program this year will be “equally committed” to making sure trippees feel prepared for Dartmouth.

“The welcoming always comes from the people,” Chuttani said. “Having real conversations and getting to know people who are ready to welcome you — that has always happened at the [Moosilauke Ravine Lodge], but now we are going to be equally committed to that at the [McLane Family Lodge].”

The shift will also present an opportunity to question one of the oldest traditions of Trips, according to Dixit.

“In many ways, it is a cool opportunity to really think about what makes Trips unique and what we really want to pass on,” Dixit said.