The Great Outdoors – outing club opportunities

Lauren Boone, Managing Editor

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Don’t let dreary winter snow days bring you down. Get outside with the University’s Outdoor Education and Leadership Program! The program aims to develop student leadership, group dynamics, and environmental awareness and appreciation.

“Our goal of our program is to partner with academia,” Director of Outdoor Education Tony Stafford said. “Academia prepares students with the knowledge of their field of study and our program helps them build the skills to be strong leaders that can create positive change in that academic field.”

The program enables students to reach these goals through its multitude of opportunities. The program consists of the Bucknell Outing Club, BuckWild, trips and events, Bison Bikes, Tustin Rental Center and Student Space, CLIMBucknell Challenge Course, and the indoor climbing wall. These respective areas have plenty to offer, even during the winter months. The Outing Club plans trips for every weekend, which include caving, biking, cross-country skiing, ice climbing, canoeing, and hiking.

“We just finished up a winter camping-caving trip, cross-country skiing trip, ice climbing at Ricketts Glen State Park, and downhill skiing and snowboarding,” Stafford said. “If the weather cooperates, we definitely plan on doing another cross-country ski trip, ice climbing trip, and a possible downhill ski trip.”

The Tustin Rental Center is open during the winter, and equipment available for rent includes cross-country skis, boots, poles, snowshoes, winter camping tents, zero degree sleeping bags, backpacks, and climbing and mountaineering gear. The challenge course and climbing wall are open during the winter months as well.

While the Outdoor Education Program has a lot to offer for the winter, they also have exciting plans for the spring. The Bison Bike program plans to open in two weeks depending on the weather. During spring break, the program will offer a canoeing trip to the Everglades. Next year, they plan to travel to either the Grand Canyon National Park or Georgia to go tree climbing. They also plan to host Canoe Battleship, a duel in the Kinney Natatorium with buckets, water guns, and shields. The event is scheduled for 8 to 11:30 p.m. on March 29.

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