This web page was created for Lewis & Clark students and anyone else who is interested in the College or the College Outdoors program. Spaces on College Outdoors trips are available to currently enrolled graduate, undergraduate, and law students, as well as faculty and staff at Lewis and Clark College. Trip selection and dates are subject to change. Contact the College Outdoors office for the most up-to-date trip list.
Spring Trip Descriptions
Beginning Cross Country Ski Clinics
This is a one-day trip to Mt. Hood for beginning cross-country skiers. After a beginning ski skills clinic we will head out to explore the surrounding ski trails and practice the techniques we just learned. The trip fee includes transportation, instruction, ski equipment, plus food if you are on the Bon Appétit meal plan. Take advantage of this great deal! If you are a more experienced skier, you are welcome to sign up for this trip to get out and do some more independent skiing (skate or classic) on the 20 km of trails at Teacup Lake.
Mount Hood Snowshoe Trips
Snowshoe on the trails around Oregon’s tallest volcano! Weather permitting, we’ll head up one of the trails on the east side of Mt. Hood looking for great views of the mountain. Snowshoeing takes a fair amount of energy, but it is great exercise and doesn’t require any previous training.
Oregon Coast Hike
Hike this spectacular area of the coast! We plan to hike a headland climbing 1,200 feet in elevation for some amazing views. After the headland, we’ll stop by a sandy beach for a little relaxation before heading back to campus. This a great way to see the rugged northern Oregon coast!
Intro to Avalanche Field Clinic
Learn the basics of snow science and avalanches in this class session and one-day field trip. We will snowshoe into the backcountry on Mt. Hood to learn how to evaluate snow and terrain conditions, use beacons, and practice rescue strategies. A mandatory 1.5 hour classroom session will introduce the concepts we will explore in the field. No previous experience needed.
Hike the Dunes of the Oregon Coast Overnight
On this trip we will head out to Umpqua Lighthouse State Park on the Central Oregon Coast for two days of great hiking. This part of the coast has the largest coastal sand dunes in the world and sports remote sandy beaches. We will hike through transition forests, sand dunes, and beaches during this weekend trip, and stay dry and warm in our deluxe yurts at night. You will definitely want to join us to explore this part of the state that is uniquely Oregon!
Winter Camping Clinic
Learn the skills of winter camping, using gear sleds, wielding those fancy-looking shovels and snow saws, and staying overnight in snow shelters you build. This trip is moderately strenuous, and is recommended for those in good physical shape and who are comfortable in the outdoors. There is a mandatory 1.5 hour pre-trip meeting before we head out for the snow, since winter camping is not the sort of thing you want to jump into without a little background. Join us for this amazing weekend and learn how to live in the snow!
Eastern Columbia River Gorge Hike
Come explore the dry side (the east end) of the Columbia River Gorge, east of the town of Hood River. This dramatic landscape, sculpted by the largest floods in earth’s geologic history, has spectacular hiking trails, lots less rain, and usually a good supply of sunshine. Join us to get some exercise, fresh air, and to see spring come to the east side of the Cascade mountains. There might be some poison oak to avoid and occasional ticks to brush off your clothes, but the scenery here is completely worth it! We will hike up to some stunning viewpoints above the Columbia River.
Birding at Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge (not currently scheduled in spring 2016)
Come with us to spot bald eagles, sandhill cranes, tundra swans, and raptors. We’ll leave campus on Sunday at 12:30 PM to see some of these creatures, which rank among the biggest birds in the world! Just 45 minutes away, on the Washington side of the Columbia River, you can spot all sorts of birds, including cool little songbirds just starting to migrate north this time of year. College Outdoors has binoculars, and spotting scopes, which you can use on this hike. You will be back by 5:30 PM- just in time for dinner!
SPRING BREAK TRIP: CALIFORNIA SURF CLINIC (offered in odd numbered years, 2017, 2019, etc.)
Learn to surf! Camp on bluffs just above the crashing Pacific Ocean, & surf on the central California coast. This course is designed for beginner surfers, yet more experienced surfers are welcome to take the classes and improve upon their skills. Learn how to read the surf conditions, how to choose the safest entry and exit point of the surf break, and proper surfing etiquette. Learn paddling, wave catching, standing up, and turning techniques. Get the best tips and coaching from the excellent surfing staff of UC Santa Cruz. All you need is your swimsuit, reasonable swimming ability, and a desire to hit the surf. We provide the rest. Spectacular trails are there to explore after your surf sessions each day. On top of that, the intriguing city of Santa Cruz and its world famous boardwalk are nearby. Trip fee includes transportation, food, camping, surf instructors, and all the equipment you’ll need! You can get one credit in PE/A 142 “Wilderness Leadership” for participation during this trip.
SPRING BREAK TRIP: HIKING AND KAYAKING REDWOOD NATIONAL PARK
Come stay at a lodge and cabins in Redwood National Park for spring break! We will spend half the week doing hikes through huge redwood forests and stunning beaches on the Pacific Ocean. We will also be able to spend half of the trip learning how to handle a kayak on the bays and lagoons adjacent to the ocean. It’s the start of spring in these spectacular forests, so the wildflowers will be blooming. The main lodge we are renting has a huge kitchen for cooking meals, great resources for learning about redwood ecology, and hot showers, too! Redwoods are the tallest living things in the world, so don’t miss this opportunity to live among them for a week! You can get one credit in PE/A 142 “Wilderness Leadership” for participation during this trip.
SPRING BREAK TRIP: COSTAL RETREAT including hiking, aquatic exploration, and yoga
Visit the Central Oregon Coast, explore the amazing Oregon Aquarium, and recharge your body doing yoga on this unique spring break trip! The trip leaves Monday of Spring Break and returns Friday evening, so you have both weekends on either end of spring break to visit friends or catch up on homework. Do yoga each day, and explore the trails of the Oregon dunes, the ocean shores, and some of the old growth forests. You can get one credit in PE/A 142 “Wilderness Leadership” for participation during this trip. This class counts as an activity credit for graduation!
SPRING BREAK TRIP: TOUR DE OREGON a multi-sport backcountry expedition
This trip is a week-long expedition exploring the lesser-seen parts of Oregon. It is rugged and rustic. The first night we will backpack into a backcountry hut on Mt. Hood to learn avalanche awareness and search for some epic views of this majestic mountain. We will then drive, hike, and snowshoe to explore more of Oregon’s fantastic landscapes including Smith Rock, volcanic craters, hot springs, sand dunes, forests, deserts, mountains, and the coast. This will be a rugged and fun trip full of hikes, a variety of landscapes, and sleeping in very rustic cabins (read, you must be willing to poop in the woods). You can get one credit in PE/A 142, “Wilderness Leadership” for participation during this trip as long you register prior to drop/add and complete a drop/add form. This class counts as an activity credit for graduation.
Edible Plants, Ethnobotany, & Waterfalls
Spring on the sunny, dry side of the Columbia Gorge is amazing. Learn to identify, as well as taste, some of the edible plants of the eastern part of the Columbia Gorge. Learn about Native American uses of plants and trees. Not only that, but learn about some of the poisonous plants you would want to avoid if you’re “wild foraging”!
Deschutes River Rafting
Central Oregon’s Deschutes River features seven major rapids in twelve miles, making this one of the premier rafting rivers in the state. You will get wet, and you need to paddle hard! This trip is not recommended for non-swimmers, but if you like whitewater—this is an awesome time!
Backpack Service Project
We’ve teamed up with 3CE for this service project as a part of Spring Into Action. This trip will follow the lower Deschutes River in the Eastern Columbia River Gorge and, while we’re out, we’ll spend two hours collecting litter, pulling invasive species and/or cleaning up campsites for the BLM. Spring is in full bloom in the Gorge by this this time in April, and wildflowers should be popping up all over. Since the rainfall this far east is minimal, plenty of sunny skies and spectacular scenery are expected!
Hike Hardy Ridge (not currently scheduled in spring 2016)
Join us for this great hike along a newly completed trail in the western Columbia Gorge! On this somewhat strenuous hike, we will follow a route through alder and Douglas-fir forests, climbing up to amazing views of the Gorge. We expect to hike 2,100 feet in elevation, but the payoff is definitely worth the effort.
Sea Kayak Sauvie Island / Scappoose Bay
You are almost guaranteed to see bald eagles when you paddle on the lakes of this north Portland island. You’ll get splendid views of Mt. Hood and Mt. St. Helens on a clear day. The area is also a wetlands haven for wildlife and migratory waterfowl.
If you have any questions please call our main office at 503-768-7116 or email us.