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College Outdoors

Winter Break Trips


New trip for Winter Break 2018!

Subtropical Outdoor Skills & Marine/Freshwater Ecology 

Thursday, January 4th - Saturday, January 13th, 2018

This course explores the Florida Keys and the subtropical rivers of central Florida (half the course in each location).

You’ll learn:

  • Outdoors Skills (sea kayaking, canoeing, & snorkeling)
  • Marine & Freshwater Ecology

Taught By:

  • Dr. Ken Clifton, Lewis & Clark Professor and Chair of Biology
  • College Outdoors Staff & Student Leaders

Trip Fee:

  • $750  (covers all food, ground transportation, lodging, entry fees, and equipment)


The trip fee does not include airfare. However, if you live in the Midwest or the East, working this into your flight from Portland to your home for Winter Break, then back to Portland, adds, on average, (when we checked last winter) about $80-$100 to the total of all your flights over winter break, compared to just flying home in December and back to campus in January.

If you are heading home for Winter Break, fly home on one leg of your flight, from Portland, at the end of Fall Semester.

To arrive in Florida for the start of this course, take an inexpensive Allegiant, Jet Blue, Spirit, or other flight from your hometown to the Orlando area (MCO or SFB airports) on Wednesday afternoon or evening, January 3;  getting to Orlando International (MCO)  or Sanford/Orlando (SFB)  no later than 9:30 PM on Wednesday, Jan. 3, 2016.  

We will run free airport pick ups at both MCO and SFB airports on January 3. 

SFB (Sanford/Orlando International Airport) is north of Orlando and is 27 miles east of our base camp for the first half of this course. Allegiant is the main domestic airline flying into SFB.  MCO (Orlando International Airport) is 42 miles southeast of our base camp, on the south side of downtown Orlando.

Return to PDX (Portland) on Saturday, January 13, 2018 (make your flight for no earlier than 1:55 PM) from Ft. Lauderdale International Airport (FLL).  

For your return to campus at the end of the course, we’ll recommend an inexpensive flight that everyone is welcome to go on, once prices for the airlines are posted in late summer, 2017.  We will have a shuttle back to campus from the Portland airport on Saturday night, Jan 13th, when that flight returns.

However, you can also take any airline you’d like out of FLL (Fort Lauderdale) on January 13th; just make sure your flight departs FLL at 1:55 PM or later on Saturday, January 13th.  Fort Lauderdale tends to have lower fares to Portland than Miami International Airport (MIA).

It’s important to understand that College Outdoors does not make the airline reservations for you, but we are glad to help you or your parents make the arrangements. This is because everyone is headed to different cities for the first part of Winter Break. You’re welcome to call or email the College Outdoors office for help with your airline reservations. Please ask for the director or the office manager.

Click here for the course syllabus.

How to Sign Up:

Register at the College Outdoors office in Templeton 244. If you’re not on campus, you could also register by calling us by calling 503-768-7116 and asking for the director or office manager. A deposit of $50 (VISA, MC, check, or cash accepted) is required to hold your space until next fall. The second trip deposit ($250) is due by September 30th. If you cancel, you get a refund on your deposit if you or College Outdoors is able to fill your space with another student, or if someone on the waiting list for this course takes your spot. This is likely, as long as you do it early in Fall Semester, but not guaranteed.