First Year Outdoor Experience

Can’t wait to start college? Get started early with Lycoming College’s First Year Outdoor Experience. Choose your week of beautiful vistas, rugged trails and scenic rivers for a backpacking adventure.

Backpacking in Loyalsock State Forest: July 22-27 or August 12-17

Bond with future classmates while learning outdoor living skills in a picturesque natural setting. Take advantage of this unique opportunity and gain new abilities, friendships, and valuable strategies to help you have a successful first year of college.

Jae Ellison, the College’s director of Outdoor Leadership and Education, and a trained student instructor will guide students through each 6-day program, suitable for outdoor adventurers of all levels. Ellison is a certified Wilderness EMT and has extensive experience guiding in wilderness settings.

The number of participants is limited to 12 for each trip. Participants will be selected from applicants who submit an application and a letter regarding how this experience will help with the transition to college.

Selected participants will be sent via email:

  • An information sheet including location and contact information
  • Suggested personal packing list
  • Medical form link
  • Informed consent and assumption of risk form link

Program Cost

Loyalsock Backpacking Adventure: $50.00

Fee includes all food and industry-leading equipment including:

  • Healthy, energy-filled food, with care taken for dietary restrictions
  • Tents and sleeping bags
  • Cooking gear
  • Safety equipment

Participants will be required to bring clothing appropriate for the weather, personal toiletries and proper footwear. A light-weight but sturdy hiking boot is recommended; students arriving without proper footwear will not be allowed to participate.

Participants must mail payment made out to Lycoming College by:
July 3 for the July trip
July 24 for the August trip

Payments not received in time will forfeit a participant’s spot, which will be offered to another applicant. No refunds will be provided after the deadline for each program.

Program Overview

July 22-27, 2019

  • Arrive at Lycoming College on July 23 at 9 a.m.
  • Introduction activities, inspections, and packing equipment
  • Lunch
  • Leave at 3 p.m. for local state forest area
  • Remaining days will be spent hiking and camping
  • Leave forest area on July 27 at 3 p.m. and arrive on campus at 4:30 p.m.
  • Unpacking and debrief activities
  • Pick-up at 6 p.m.

August 12-17, 2019

  • Arrive at Lycoming College on August 12 at 9 a.m.
  • Students given time to put personal belongings into a temporary location while on the trip
  • Introduction activities, inspections, and packing equipment
  • Lunch
  • Leave at 3 p.m. for local state forest area
  • Remaining days will be spent hiking and camping
  • Leave forest area on August 17 at 3 p.m. and arrive on campus at 4:30 p.m.
  • Unpacking and debrief activities
  • Students participating in the Loyalsock Backpacking Trip that are traveling from outer territories to Lycoming, may elect to stay on campus until their respective orientation begins
  • Room check-in or pick-up at 6 p.m.