Facing the problem that this year’s snowfall is, well, rather low, Wyoming Catholic College has decided to introduce the rather drastic step of “importing snow” for use on the Freshman Winter Expedition this year. “Participants on the trip need a lot of snow to have a real experience of winter and fulfil the goals we want them to accomplish,” says the director of the school’s Outdoor Leadership Program, Dr. Bartholomew Remmiz. “Luckily the school has a large fleet of trucks and vehicles capable of carrying snow from around the country to the areas where students will be camping on the expedition,” he added. “Also, doubly lucky for us, Flex has a lot of help right now so there are plenty of people to drive the snow out there for where we’ll need it.”
The school plans to carry around 40,000 truckloads of snow out to the Grant Teton National Park wilderness this week, enough to allow the construction of quinzees, snow kitchens, snow altars, and the like to go as normal. An alternate plan to bring in snow for the trip that was considered would have involved setting off dynamite on the peaks above the region students camp in with the hope of “pre-avalanching the area with enough snow” according to Dr. Remmiz. “However, since we treat avalanches as a threat most of the time, it would have been the wrong pedagogical move if avalanches were now seen as an ‘essential part of the curriculum’ because of their use in making the trip happen,” he commented. “So, we just decided to bring in the extra snow from outside. It’s environmentally safe as all the snow will just melt in a few months anyway.”
Also changing this year are some of the gear recommendations for students and participants on the week-long expedition. Quinzees stay at a nearly constant 50℉ inside, so 40℉ rated sleeping bags are recommended to prevent overheating and sweating as has often occurred in the past with students bringing warmer bags along.
Remember as a general rule when packing for the trip: COTTON IS KEY!