Fall Pre-Orientation Trips
An Experience of a Lifetime
Rather than spending your last few days before Orientation at home, biting your nails, packing and repacking, we strongly recommend attending a Pre-Orientation Trip. On the Clarkson University Outing Club (CUOC) Pre-Orientation Trips, our trained student leaders will guide you through the beautiful wilderness of the Adirondack Park in northern New York for four days and three nights. We have backpacking and canoeing trips for every skill level and interest, and you are certain to make lifelong friends, learn about the Clarkson experience from upperclassmen, get a head start on the college experience, and even move into your residence hall room early!
Students attending trips move into their rooms early on Monday, August 22nd and arrive back to campus on Friday, August 26th in time for Orientation. We even provide a special orientation for your parents and family members when you arrive on the 22nd so they do not need to make a separate trip to Clarkson.
Each trip costs $190 which includes an on-campus dinner for you and two family members, a free t-shirt to commemorate your trip, all transportation and food costs during the trip, an on-campus barbecue exclusively for trip attendees, and extensive Wilderness First Responder training for your student trip leaders. Sign up for a trip by completing your checklist items on PeopleSoft. Login with your Clarkson username and password (same as your email) at www.clarkson.edu/peoplesoft.php.
NOTE: Students who are a part of the Clarkson School or Honors Program are NOT eligible for these pre-orientations experiences due to their own Orientation trip taking place at the same time.
Each trip is led by two experienced leaders, and there are eight people (including leaders) per trip. Those wishing to go on a canoe trip must be able to swim. Hiking trips require a pair of well-fitting, broken-in hiking or work boots with good support, as all participants will be carrying large backpacks. All trips will be a primitive camping experience. No special equipment is necessary, but anyone wishing to bring his or her own gear is highly encouraged to do so.
Difficult Hiking: Participant must have experience. Participant must be in good shape. Carrying heavy packs (35-50lbs) for 4-7 miles and day packs (10lbs) for 7-12 miles per day. Rough Terrain. 5-10 peaks.
Moderate Hiking: Participant should have some experience. Participant should be in good shape. Carrying heavy packs for 3-5 miles and day packs for 5-10 miles per day. Rough Terrain. 3-6 peaks.
Easy Hiking: Participant doesn't need experience. Participant does not need to be in good shape. Carrying heavy packs for 2-4 miles and day packs for 3-7 miles per day. Moderate Terrain. 1-4 peaks.
Difficult Canoeing: Participant must have experience. Participant must be in good shape. Canoeing 10-15 miles per day and carrying canoes 2-4 miles. Also, carrying heavy packs 2-4 miles.
Moderate Canoeing: Participant should have some experience. Participant should be in good shape. Canoeing 6-12 miles per day and carrying canoes .5-3 miles. Also, carrying heavy packs .5-3 miles.
Easy Canoeing: Participant doesn't need experience. Participant does not need to be in good shape. Canoeing 2-7 miles per day and carrying canoes up to .5 miles. Also, carrying heavy packs for .5 miles.
Moderate Climbing: Climbing trips are open to all students. However, those who have previously rock-climbed will be given priority.
Trip 1: Still Better Than Hiking
Leaders: Will Callanan, Troy Bates
Difficulty: Easy Canoeing
Day 1: We will put our boats into the fish hatchery (pretty awesome!) off of Route 30. Heading through a few short portages and ending on Saint Regis Pond.
Day 2: Explore the area surrounding the campsite. Expect a lot of swimming today! Canoeing, rock jumping, and a little shenanigans can't be ruled out.
Day 3: Today, we make our way to Lower Saint Regis Lake. This leg of the journey includes three short portages. Expect lots of easy canoeing and a little bit of hiking sprinkled in!
Day 4: Pack up camp in the morning. Paddle through all of the Lower Saint Regis and being picked up near Paul Smith's College.
Description: Come and move in before your classmates and then spend three days canoeing St. Regis Lake. Will and Troy will lead an adventure for all ranges of skill level. You will spend 50% of the time canoeing and 100% of your time having fun. Expect better than mediocre cooking and some of the best card games. On this trip, you will paddle through the ONLY primitive canoe area in the Adirondacks. Regardless of what happens the trip will still be better than hiking, I guarantee it.
Trip 2: Saranac Seminar
Leaders: Kyle Stone, Remington Little
Difficulty: Moderate Canoeing
Day 1: Paddle from drop off point through the Upper Saranac Lake region arriving early to our Lean-to to set up camp and eat dinner.
Day 2: Be prepared to carry the boats and gear a short distance today as we have to pass between Upper and Middle Saranac. Paddle north to the Northway Lean-to while exploring the Middle Saranac Lake Region.
Day 3: Paddle to the Kiwassa Lean-to going past the boat launch on Route 3 and exploring the region further. Today we will pass through various locks located on Middle and Lower Saranac Lake.
Day 4: Paddle through another lock and end up at the public boat launch in downtown Saranac Lake.
Description: Spend four days exploring the Saranac Lake chain with two pretty awesome tour guides. The food will be great, the company will be impeccable, and the memories will be endless. There is no better way to start off your college career. Who knows, maybe bacon and eggs will make an appearance for breakfast. And if that doesn't make up your mind, we don't know what will.
Trip 3: Sunny Saranac
Leaders: Dylan Gilgalon, Owen Curry
Difficulty: Difficult Canoeing
Day 1: Paddle Lake Flower/Oseetah/Second pond all the way to the end of First Pond.
Day 2: Spend the day paddling through Lower Saranac Lake/Middle Saranac Lake to the campsite.
Day 3: Paddle Middle Saranac Lake to the Hungry Bay Weller Pond Portage. From this we will travel to Saginaw Bay of Upper Saranac Lake and paddle to the campsite for the night.
Day 4: Paddling all of Upper Saranac Lake to the pick up point on the north side of the lake.
Description: We will be taking scenic a paddle through one of the most beautiful parts of the Adirondaks on our trip. We will start on Lake Flower, and work through Lower, Middle and Upper Saranac Lake. We will be camping at sites throughout the lakes. Highlights of the trip will include cliff jumping, chillin' on the beach, and a lock. The trip is of moderate length and includes one carry, which paddlers should be ready for.
Trip 4: Gallivanting Around the Ausable
Leaders: Nicole Zaino, Brian Chrzan
Difficulty: Easy Hiking
Day 1: Hike in to Indian head and watch the sunset.
Day 2: Hike Sawteeth and possibly Pyramid and Gothics. Three amazing mountians!
Day 3: Hike Colvin and Blake. Be ready to have two more high peaks under your belt after today is over!
Day 4: Pack out to the Ausable Club and Wait to head back to school to start your college careers.
Description: Come explore with Brian and Nicole! If you join us you will see spectacular sunsets, majestic mountains, and lovable leaders. On this trip we will camp near the amazing Indian Head and hike 3-4 high peaks; Sawteeth, Gothics, Colvin, and Blake. This is a easy/moderate trip but don’t be scared; you will be in great hands. When not on the trail you will enjoy card games, many laughs, and new friends.
Trip 5: The Yellow Leaf Road
Leaders: Cole Oshiro-Leavitt, Cassie Wells
Difficulty: Easy Hiking
Day 1: Hike in from the ADK Loj to the Avalanche Lean to and set up camp for the night. A great dinner can be expected.
Day 2: Hike through Avalanche lake and possibly swim. We will also hike some, choosing from Marcy/Grey/Cliff/Redfield/Colden and come back to the same site for the night.
Day 3: Spend the day with an easy hike back to the Avalanche Lean to for the night.
Day 4: Pack out to the ADK Loj and if time swim in Heart Lake.
Description: Right off the bat we will be doing about 6 miles, past Marcy Dam and Lake Arnold to Feldspar lean-to. The next day we have options! We can choose to hike any of the mountains in the area or just spend the day swimming in the Opalescent River. The next night we will hike through beautiful Avalanche Pass possible stopping to swim in Lake Colden or Avalanche Lake and then staying in one of the lean-tos on the other side of the pass. On the last morning we will hike the short distance back out to the Loj where we will meet up with other groups to brag about how much better our trip was. Then we can swim in Heart lake or climb Mt. Jo before the bus comes to bring us back to Clarkson. This trip is super flexible and the only thing you need to prepare is some comfy boots and a good attitude.
Trip 6: Extreme Gardening 2
Leaders: Adam Graham, Andrew Toman
Difficulty: Moderate Hiking
Day 1: Pack in roughly 4 miles starting from the Garden Trailhead in Keene Valley. Set up camp upon arrival. If group morale permits, hike Big Slide for dinner/sunset.
Day 2: Wake up, throw on swim trunks and head down towards John's Brook. We will spend the day rock hopping from swimming hole to swimming hole, eventually finding ourselves at a well kept secret of a swimming spot that has a natural water slide.
Day 3: Our itinerary today is completely flexible and dependent upon group ability and interest. Some the potential High Peaks that we could hike include: Marcy (the tallest in NY), Skylight, Gray, Haystack, Basin, Saddleback, Gothics, Armstrong, Upper Wolfjaw, and Lower Wolfjaw (to name just a few).
Day 4: Pack up camp early and hike out the same way that we came. This time, however, we will not be meeting the bus at The Garden. We will be picked up by the bus after a scrumptious breakfast at the famous Noonmark Diner.
Description: For their senior year, trip leaders extraordinare Adam and Andrew are leading their dream trip. Consisting of a day of swimming and a day of summiting peaks, this trip was forged with flexibility in mind. If you are coming on this trip prepare to laugh a lot, enjoy wonderful company, and learn a lot about the Adirondacks. We'll make your last week of summer very much worth while! Also, we are getting pie from Noonmark Diner. Have you signed up yet?
Trip 7: The Search for Yogi
Leaders: Michael Coelho, Tanner Burt
Difficulty: Moderate Hiking
Day 1: Start our trip out with a Hike in 6.7 miles from the ADK Loj to our first Feldspar Lean to. We will spend the rest of the day setting up our base camp here.
Day 2: Hike 5 miles round trip up Skylight and Gray. After today we will have summited two of the Adirondacks high peaks.
Day 3: Hike a 4.6 mile round trip up to Mount Marcy. Then we will pick up our gear at the leanto and move to Lake Arnold. At the end of today we will have been to the top of New Yorks highest peak!
Day 4: Hike out to the ADK Loj from Lake Arnold and await our ride back to Clarkson.
Description: Come spend four awesome days with two dudes exploring the wondrous Adirondack High Peaks. The food will be edible and the company tolerable. This moderate hiking trip will offer some of the most awe-inspiring views of mountains. So come start your college career with a great backpacking trip! Where we will see trees, mountains, rocks, leaves, water, and possibly Yogi Bear! Ay Boo Boo! Note: We are not actually looking for any bears, but hey, if we happen to find Yogi, at least we can get a picnic basket!
Trip 8: Don't Go Chasing Waterfalls
Leaders: David Desmond, Matthew Dyer
Difficulty: Moderate Hiking
Day 1: Spend the day hiking the Ausable club inner trails before setting up camp for the night.
Day 2: Visit the famous waterfalls and spend the day exploring the beautiful scenery.
Day 3: Hike one or both of the Wolfjaws depending on how the group feels and the weather. Either way were in for a interesting day of hiking.
Day 4: Pack up camp and hike out to the garden where we will be picked up before heading back to school.
Description: Back by popular demand the choose your own adventure styling of Matt Dyer will be taken to a whole new level with additional challenge of splashing around in as many waterfalls, streams, lakes, ponds and puddles as possible. This trip is sure to include great food, great friends, a few surprises, and if you choose, some high peaks. But you wouldn't expect anything less from what is sure to be the best Pre-O trip this side of the Mississippi!
Trip 9: Howling in the Moonlight
Leaders: Sonja Gagen, Katie Dunn
Difficulty: Difficult Hiking
Day 1: Pack in from the Garden over Big Slide and then set up camp at Klondike Lean-to for the night and make an amazing dinner!
Day 2: Leave from JBL Lean to and day hike Haystack and Marcy (and maybe Skylight). After today you will have been to the highest point in New York State.
Day 3: Day hike from JBL Lean-to to Gothics, Armstrong, and Upper and Lower Wolfjaw. Then return back to the JBL Lean-to. Bagging four high peaks in one day!
Day 4: Hike out from the JBL Lean-to to the Noonmark Diner for pie!
Description: Join Katie and Sonja to explore the Great Range! We will begin by packing in from the Garden trailhead over Big Slide and spend the afternoon setting up a base camp at the John Brook’s Lean-tos. We plan to soak up what remains of the moon light the next day as we summit Skylight and Haystack mountains. For our third day we will hike Armstrong, Lower and Upper Wolfjaw (and potentially Gothics depending on how sore our paws are). Finally, on our last day we will pack out through the Garden and feast on some pie at Noonmark’s Diner. Come join our wolfpack for some challenging climbs and spectacular views!
Trip 10: I Wanna Hike Wright Now
Leaders: Patrick Conlon, Meghan Voorhees
Difficulty: Difficult Hiking
Day 1: Hike to the flowed lands, set up camp, then hike Cliff Mountain if there is time left in the day.
Day 2: Hike up either Iroquois and Algonquin or Colden depending on the adventure level of the group.
Day 3: Either full pack over Marcy, then pass by Indian-falls before going to the Marcy Dam area.
Day 4: Exit to the lodge.
Description: Join Patrick and Meghan on a trip of a lifetime. Get four days of non-stop hiking action in one of the most beautiful areas in the Northeast! Start out with a long full pack into the flowed lands, traveling between avalanche pass and the highest mountains in New York State. Set up camp at a lean-to, then eat dinner and relax for the rest of the day. Next morning hit up the Macintyres, tagging Iroquois, Algonquin, and Wright and enjoying the day with some awesome views. On day three we will be full packing from the flowed lands up to Grey, Skylight and then full packing over Marcy, the highest peak in New York. After that, we will cruise out to Marcy Dam, spend the night there and get some rest after a killer leg day, then full-pack out to the bus the next morning. On this trip we will have the potential to hit up six of the 46 high peaks and some of the most beautiful scenery in the ADK. Warning: This trip involves a stupid amount of miles, a ridiculous amount of vertical, and a lot of singing and nonsense. If you are not in good shape or have no hiking experience, this trip is not for you... Meghan really wants to hike and will stop at nothing (except trail mix breaks) to achieve her goals.
Trip 11: Top Rope Tough Guyz
Leaders: Adam Haskin, Dan Jaremczuk, Mark Zibinski
Difficulty: Moderate Climbing
Day 1: Setup camp and if time and morale permits climb at first lead slab.
Day 2: Go climb at Beer Walls. This is some of the most fun and exciting rock climbing in the Adirondacks.
Day 3: Go climbs those rocks at Jewels and Jems. Once again, this is amazing rock climbing spot that will surely make for an amazing day!
Day 4: Pack up camp and wait to be picked up and head back to school.
Description: So who is ready to spend the first week at Clarkson rock climbing with the Outing Club’s finest guys? Sounds like a deal to me!! You will be able to climb at some of the most iconic crags throughout the Adirondacks with a short Ukrainian kid, a guy that overclocks computers, and a guy who just loves rocks. We will be staying near Chapel Pond, and it will pretty much be a car camping trip. Your guides are all NOLS alumni, WFR certified, and professional amateurs. Make sure you leave enough room in your bag for your sense of adventure, and get stoked to climb with the Top Rope Tough Guyz!
Trip 12: Climbing Chairs and Other
Leaders: Miles Miller, Jacob Brown, Nolan Huther
Difficulty: Moderate Climbing
Day 1: Setup camp and climb at Jewels and Gems, some of the Adirondacks most fun rock.
Day 2: Climb at Upper Beer Walls, another of the gorgeous rock climbing sopts in the Adirondacks that never disappoints.
Day 3: Climb at Lower Beer Walls.
Day 4: Pack up camp and hang out at the pond until we get picked up and head back to Clarkson.
Description: Interested in rock climbing? Keene on adventuring? Join us on this trip and we'll help you learn the basics. We will be climbing at various crags in Keene Valley throughout the trip. The three guides have training in first aid and lots of climbing experience. There will be a variety of routes for all skill levels. Some outdoor experience is preferred.
Name: Adam Graham
Name: Adam Haskin
Name: Andrew Toman
Name: Brian Chrzan
Name: Cassie Wells Lumbrazo
Name: Cole Oshiro-Leavitt
Name: Danylo Jaremczuk
Name: David Desmond
Name: Dylan Gilgallon
Name: Jacob Brown
Name: Katie Dunn
Name: Kyle Stone
Name: Mark Zibinski
Name: Matthew Dyer
Name: Meghan Voorhees
Name: Michael Coelho
Name: Miles Miller
Name: Nicole Zaino
Name: Nolan Huther
Name: Owen Curry
Name: Patrick Conlon
Name: Remington Little
Name: Sonja Gagen
Name: Tanner Burt
Name: Troy Bates
Name: Will Callanan
HOW TO APPLY: Sign-ups for pre-orientation trips happen from April 15 to July 15. Sign up for a trip by completing your checklist items on PeopleSoft. Login with your Clarkson username and password (same as your email) at www.clarkson.edu/peoplesoft.php.
CUOC Pre-Orientation Trip Travel Policy and Release, Consent, and Waiver Form
Have questions we didn't answer? Try our Trip FAQs. Still didn't find your answer? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mini Orientations: A mini-orientation on Monday, August 22nd is available for families of students who are participating in pre-orientation trips. This session is held for your family’s convenience so two trips to Potsdam for Orientation events are not necessary.
IMPORTANT: Due to the nature and location of many of these trips it is direly important that you bring any medication that you could possibly need on your trip. This is even more important to students with conditions such as asthma or allergies to bee stings. If you have ever needed an inhaler, BRING IT, if you have any reason to need an Epi-pen, BRING ATLEAST ONE, we cannot provide this type of medication. If for any reason you normally wear a medical alert bracelet due to drug allergies you MUST wear it the WHOLE trip. Please come prepared with all medications you could need, and inform your leader personally of any possible medical complications you may have.
Top 5 reasons to go on a pre-Orientation trip:
5) Get an awesome T-Shirt.
4) Move in early (get all the good stuff in the room).
3) Have fun in the ‘Dacks and get settled before work sets in.
2) Meet interesting people and make new friends even before classes start.
1) Become part of the coolest club on campus!