This month marks the start of the Outdoor Pursuits (OP) Summit Series, an eight day series spanning from Feb. 17 to April 26. This year’s venture will be led by Sam Anderson, a senior at Pacific University, as well as Professor Paige Baugher, the head of the Biology Department. The goal will be to summit Mt. Saint Helens as well as have some training days on Mt. Hood.
“It’s super cool actually,” Anderson said. “We do a couple different field sessions and classroom sessions. We focus on not only the physical skills but there’s also a session learning about avalanche danger and another that’s basically a snow school where you learn to use the equipment like ice picks and crampons.”
Hayden Martinez, a sophomore at Pacific and a past attendee of this series, says, “I loved the whole series. It was really informative and made summiting mountains seem more attainable.”
While Martinez has been around mountains his whole life, this series is tailored for beginners. “It’s challenging, but it is beginner friendly,” says Anderson. “You don’t have to have any past experiences. You really have to be willing to walk up a hill for 12 hours.”
OP advertises itself as a great way for students to get off campus and explore the beautiful Pacific Northwest at a price that is easily affordable for students. The price of this series is $195 for students and $220 for Pacific University faculty.
Other upcoming excursions include a white water rafting course starting Feb. 27, and a hiking day trip on March 1 as part of their beginner series. OP also offers gear rentals for things such as sleeping bags, surf boards and snow shoes, as well as a mountain shuttle that will bring students up to Mt. Hood for a day of skiing or snowboarding.
For a full list of OP adventures, visit their section of the Pacific University website or in person at 2017 21st Ave.