Outdoor Action Program

<p>Does anyone know what this costs? (or what it cost last year?)

<p>I believe last year was around $450 (I could be a little bit off). You'll have to buy extra supplies though (boots, etc) but if you don't want to get your own, you can usually borrow the school's stuff once you get here. There is a financial aid application as well for the fees, but it won't cover everything.</p>

<p>Do you think it's worth the money?</p>

<p>Do Outdoor Action. Even if you've never been backpacking before, or climbing before, or canoeing before. Seriously, it was one of the most fun weeks I've had since becoming a Princeton student, and that's saying a lot. </p>

<p>Financial aid won't cover everything, unfortunately, but you can borrow the more expensive items such as hiking boots, backpacks, and sleeping bags from the school. Just indicate that you'll need these supplies on the form.</p>

<p>I still keep in touch with my OA friends, and I know that a lot of OA and CA (also a great program) groups are really tight-knit. It was also a wonderful, intimate introduction to the diversity of Princeton students. I really loved OA, no showering, 9 mile hikes, sketchy food, and all!</p>

<p>I agree -- do it. It's a really good way to "ease" you into college life. Once you get back, your dorm already feels like home (perhaps because you're so exhausted). You also know seven or eight other freshman and two or three upperclassman already, and that really ups the comfort-level over the first few weeks.</p>

<p>It is definitely worth the money. (Though I got aid and only had to pay $200, but I also bought boots which cost like $60) I had never done anything like it, and it was such a good experience.</p>

<p>Hey guys, </p>

<p>First of all, you all should definitely do Outdoor Action, everything the other current students have said is true in that respect. Just one thing to add though. OA financial add has been increased dramatically for this coming trip. Anyone receiving financial aid will have their OA or CA costs (not including equipment, etc.) completely covered. Obviously this is a huge deal and we're all really excited about it. To clarify, we can lend out sleeping bags and packs for free if necessary. </p>

<p>The food is so not sketchy, either.</p>

<p>I actually work for OA, so if you guys have any further questions, go ahead and post them.</p>

<p>Matt Foglia '09</p>

<p>i heard you don't shower and you have to wipe your ass with leaves</p>

<p>that's a blunt way to put it, gxing!
i'm guessing there'll be outhouses along the way?</p>

<p>Some campsites, particularly along the AT, do have outhouses. Others do not. However, all trips DO bring along a roll of toilet paper. Most folks end up using the natural alternatives in order to support Leave No Trace or just for the novelty, but the option for TP is there. </p>

<p>Showers are for the most part unavailable. One or two trips are arranged in such a way that showers are available in case of medical necessity (so if you're a frosh and have a skin condition, you can still participate!), but everybody else is out of luck in that department. I promise that it isn't as bad as you think. Everyone will smell the same, and you don't really notice it. Remember, you'll be outside in the open air at all times, so it's not like you're in a crowded room.</p>

<p>I actually preferred not using the outhouses, they were kind of gross. Although members in my group disagreed. The food is definitely not shabby (which makes the backpack heavier, but the more you eat the lighter it gets!). The no showering issue is part of the whole experience, and at the end of it you get to shower all the dirt off of you in your new dorm before going to dinner with your OA group (in which you won't recognize anyone because they'll be clean and in normal clothes). It's a good experience :)</p>

<p>so wasn't everyone around you while you were polluting the earth or as gxing put it, "wiping your ass"? </p>

<p>no privacy???</p>

<p>What kind of outdoors experience do most of the participants have?</p>

<p>D absolutely loved it.</p>

<p>The other Princetonians matter more than the outdoors.</p>

<p>When you need to 'trowel,' as we say, you take the trowel kit (trowel, toilet paper, Purel, emergency whistle, etc) and hike at least 200 feet off the trail to do your thing. The distance is more for trail sanitation and Leave No Trace, but it helps with privacy too.</p>

<p>Participants range in outdoor experience. There are intense trips for those who are looking for that (the Catskills, generally) and there are not-so-intense trips for folks without a whole lot of experience. I led an Outdoor Adventure trip last September, which is popular with those who don't have any outdoor experience at all but want to test the water, so to speak. Everyone had fun, regardless of their hardcore-ness.</p>

<p>I also highly recommend doing OA. The people who didn't had a bit more difficult freshman week since they didn't have a group of people they knew to go around with. DO IT.</p>

<p>I heard there are no phones, ipods, etc., on the trips - where do you store it while you are away? I heard just leave them in a corner in your room because you shouldn't set up (choose a bed, etc) until the next weekend. Any problems with that? Will that stuff all be there when we return?</p>

<p>Things like phones/ipod/wallet your trip leader will take up from you the morning before you leave and put it in a box which OA will store/ it will be safe. All your other stuff you leave in your room. As long as you lock your door (and actually, even if you don't) it should be totally safe. It'll be there when you get back.</p>

<p>You can leave pretty much everything in your room. There's an option to put stuff in security storage the day before OA; I was going to put my laptop there, but I missed the time that it was open, so I just left it in a drawer in my room and it was perfectly fine. The intensity of the outdoor experience for OA really varies, depending on the trip you take, but the bonding experience is really something worthwhile no matter what. You might complain during the trip, but afterwards they turn into memorable moments that you look back on.</p>

<p>Fun story: During my trip, we somehow managed to lose our trowel kit, so the Support Crew -- group of students sitting in nearby hotels delivering water, etc to you; if you get hurt or need to get evacuated, you get picked up by Support -- came to deliver us another one. (It was wonderful, we sat around eating all the food while the leaders went back to look for the trowel and then got in touch with Command Center.) We were trying to cross a busy road at the same time, but there were too many cars, so the two Support vans came in opposite directions, stopped, and put on their hazard lights so that we could pass. At that point, I couldn't stop smiling about how cool the Princeton community was. :)</p>

<p>hey guys did any of you get a packet or info on this???becuase suddenly everyone is signing up but i never got info about it</p>