Winter outdoor program hits the cascades

Written by | January 19, 2012

The Outdoor Program will be organizing a 2-day snow camping trip to Mt. St. Helens next weekend

The outdoor program at the Academic and Student Recreation Center will be organizing a two-day Snow Camping trip on Mt. St. Helens Jan. 28 and 29. The destination could be changed to Mt. Hood depending on the weather and other factors.

“We will make a decision between Mt. St. Helens and Mt. Hood depending on the avalanche danger, whichever is lower, and the comfort level,” said Adam Edwards, a post-baccalaureate sociology major and trip leader. “The decision will be made on Wed., Jan. 25.”

Mt. St. Helens is an active volcano located about 50 miles northeast of Portland. It last exploded on May 18, 1982.

The trip is open for Portland State students, staff, faculty and the general public. ASRC members are charged $80 for the trip while non-members pay $160. State motor pool vehicles will be used for the commute. Participants need to be at least 18 years old.

“So far nine participants have signed up,” Edwards said. “Other than that, we will have two to three trip leaders accompany them on the trip.”

Every employee at the ASRC is CPR-AED certified to be able to respond to emergencies.

The Outdoor Program office will provide some gear and food, but the participants are advised to bring some of their own gear like gloves, hats and snow clothing. The outdoor program will provide items like snow shoes, ski poles, tents, etc. If the participants need to rent some items from the outdoor program for the trip, they will be provided for no additional cost.

No previous experience in snow camping is required for the trip.

“If you can walk and hike, you can come along,” Edwards said.

Interested students can sign up for the trip at the Outdoor Program Office on the south-east corner of the ASRC building. The deadline for registration is Jan. 23 and a mandatory pre-trip meeting will be held later that day.

The conditions and the weather forecast while going into print seemed to be very favorable.

“We had about 11 inches of snow fall on Mt. Hood and about 10 and a half inches on Mt. St. Helens on Monday,” Edwards said. “We are hoping for some more snow. Right now, its snow rain which can be very uncomfortable. So we will pick a destination accordingly.”

This trip will be the first snow camping trip that the Outdoor Program has undertaken in the last few years. The Outdoor Program is also organizing an Adaptive Ski trip, two cross country ski trips and a AIARE level 1 avalanche seminar in the winter term.

“I feel everyone should take advantage of these trips,” Edwards said. “Its a great way to get involved with Portland State and interact with the Northwestern wilderness. For the younger students who cannot go to these places on their own, we help them with travel.”

For more information, you can contact the Outdoor Program office at the ASRC by calling 503–725-5668 or emailing odp@pdx.edu.

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