Outdoor Adventures

Drop Shadow

Pre-O Adventure Trips 2013

For 2013, there will be four Pre-O Adventure trips offered. Each trip is unique and they offer a variety of experiences. Learn more about the trips below.

The Original Pre-O Adventure: Laguna Mountains

CampingOnly 90 minutes east of campus, the Laguna Mountains is a beautiful location to start your USD career. While on Pre-O Adventure, you will spend two nights camping in tents at a national forest campground. Tents will fit between two and four people each. A sleeping bag and pad will help make this a comfortable experience. Meals will be prepared on camping stoves, over campfires and in Dutch Ovens. There will be picnic tables available. There are no showers or electricity.

Believe it or not, the Laguna Mountains are home to the Pacific Crest Trail - a national treasure that traverses the west coast from Mexico to Canada. We will only hike a small fraction of the 2,650 mile trail during our outing, but we will surely find a uniquely western scene that will rejuvenite, inspire and even surprise. Hike through chaparral, scrub oaks and pines to the rim of the Jeffrey pine shaded Laguna Mountains. Enjoy expansive views of Anza-Borrego State Park to the east and San Diego County and even the Pacific Ocean to the west.

Our ropes course experience will include a variety of individual and partner challenges that take place 30-45 feet off the ground! Participants will work together and in small groups to complete a series of elements. These elements will challenge participants to achieve more than they thought possible. Each new challenge offers the discovery of a new strength. We will close our trip with the ropes course on Friday and return to campus with a new found confidence to take on new challenges and push past perceived limits.

This trip takes place August 28-30, 2013. It is open to 50 incoming students. The cost is $265.


Backpack the Sierra Nevada Mountains

backpackExperience one of the best panoramic views in the Sierra Nevada mountains! The challenges of traveling by foot and living out of a backpack are rewarded by pristine alpine lakes, giant Sequoias, rugged peaks and a shared sense of accomplishment.

The Sierra Nevada is a mountain range that runs 400 miles north to south in eastern California. It contains three of America's favorite national Parks (Yosemite, Kings Canyon and Sequoia) in addition to Lake Tahoe (the largest alpine lake in the country) and Mount Whitney (the highest point in the contiguous 48).

We will spend four nights camping in the mountains while backpacking between 4 and 10 miles per day at an elevation above 8,000 ft. There will be time to relax in camp, stargaze and get to know your fellow campers as you travel though spectacular mountain scenery.

The rugged beauty of the Sierras is a perfect backdrop for an inspiring Pre-O Adventure trip. Learn how to live in community, gain a new awareness about your relationship with the environment and pick up a few new camping skills along the way!

This trip takes place August 25-30, 2013. It is open to 10 incoming students. The cost is $425.


Hike, Snorkel & Kayak the Channel Islands

channel islands Close to Los Angeles, yet a world apart. Travel by boat 18 miles off the coast of California and camp on Santa Cruz Island, the largest of the Channel Islands. Sometimes referred to at the Galapagos of the United States, Santa Cruz Island is an amazing location to hike along cliffs, kayak sea caves and snorkel in a kelp forest.

The Channel Islands National Park, established in 1980, is one of the least visited national Parks despite it's proximity to Los Angeles. We will camp and explore Santa Cruz Island, the largest island off the California coast. One of the most visited islands in the park, Santa Cruz is the perfect place to hike, kayak and snorkel. Craggy coastline cliffs, mystical sea caves, a kelp forest and great underwater visibility makes this island appealing to adventure seekers.

Dolphins, whales, sea lions, garabaldi fish, sea birds, and the endemic island scrub jay and island fox are some of the wildlife we can anticipate seeing.

Santa Cruz is also rich in cultural history with over 10,000 years of American Indian habitation and 150 years of European ranching. Remnants of the ranching era are visible throughout the island.

This trip takes place August 25-30, 2013. It is open to 12 incoming students. The cost is $525.


Tall Ship Sailing off the California Coast

irving johnsonThis sailing expedition will be one of your most unique experiences at USD. Once you step aboard the Irving Johnson, a 90 foot-long and 129 ton Brigantine, you become the crew that will sail this ship.

During this continuous sailing expedition in the open Pacific ocean you will be assigned a watch (a group of 4-6 sailors and 1 crew from the ship) that will take turns running all aspects of the ship 24 hours a day. From standing bow watch to plotting a course at the navigation table or taking a turn a the wheel steering the ship at night your crew will run the ship during a 4 hour watch duty.

You will learn about all aspect of tall ship sailing: navigation, astronomy and off-shore marine ecology all the while becoming more familiar with the life of a sailor. Learn a new vocabulary as you trim and furl the sails and learn knots, splicing and a variety of seamanship skills.

This will be an amazing experience where you will learn what it really means to work as a team, understanding the importance of both giving commands and the ability to follow them. Your watch will be like an alternate family as you cast away for this high seas adventure.

This trip takes place August 24-29, 2013. It is open to 8 incoming students. The cost is $625.