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Davis, California

Thursday, April 18, 2024

Outdoor Adventure offers California nature as Spring Quarter extracurricular

Campus department offers trips in whitewater rafting, hiking and more

With Spring Quarter comes lots of sun and lots of fun in said sun. Everyone wants to get outside and enjoy all of the activities Davis has to offer. First-year economics major Edita Astaguana spoke about how excited she was to participate in outdoor activities during Spring Quarter.

“Coming from a place where it is always spring and always summer, this quarter makes it feel like I am at a home away from home because I am finally able to try out the outdoor activities I want to do,” Astaguna said.

With over 800 student organizations to join, however, it can be hard to find one where you will fit in and find what you want to do. Outdoor Adventures is a nonprofit organization that operates under the umbrella of the university, specifically under the department of the Memorial Union. OA began at Davis in the ‘70s and has been here ever since.

“In the ‘70s there was a large push [and] a lot of interest for outdoor adventure sports,” said Beck Van Horsen, OA’s assistant director. “They were sort of birthed in the ‘70s, if you talk to any organization they just kind of started then. These students were just sort of interested in starting a program at UC Davis and then there was this conference in Oregon and at the end of the meeting they came up with the OA program.”

OA provides students with the opportunity to get outside.

“OA is a program at the university that wants to get people outside on any adventure that we can pretty much think of,” said Van Horsen.

OA organizes day hikes, backpacking trips, camping trips, teaches students how to paddle-board, whitewater raft and even manages the climbing wall in the ARC.

“All of our trips are designed for the beginner but are fun for people who have done it before,” Van Horsen said. “Our whole mission is to get people outside and have them do things they have never done before by giving them the necessary tools to do it, and take away the barriers that people perceive to going outside like price and equipment. I think often people are nervous that they will come out and not be accepted but this is a space where any type of person who is interested in this will be accepted.”

First-year computer science and engineering major Jiss Xavier is glad that this program exists and cannot wait for the opportunity to get outside.

“It would be a great opportunity to gain a feel for the outdoors found in California, considering I have lived abroad all my life,” Xavier said.

Written by: ISABELLA BERISTAIN — features@theaggie.org


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