Last week, Gonzaga Outdoors put on Adventure Week, inviting the community to partake in a variety of activities. Adventure week is not to be confused with GU outdoors’ “Week of Adventure,” which takes place annually during the spring semester.
From office yoga to renting out Wild Walls climbing gym for students, there was a wide variety of events offered throughout the week.
Some of the 10 events offered did not end up running due to a low student turnout.
Alex Gannet, a senior working as the director of student programming at the GU Outdoors office, attributed the low turnout in those events to a host of different factors from the near-freezing temperatures that kept many students cuddled in blankets instead of out at a sunrise hike, or the second wave of midterms work that students were busy with.
“The overall student participation in Adventure Week was similar to what we have seen in our past years,” said junior Sophia Kaelke, who is in charge of Adventure Week.
The event participants were not limited to just GU students. At the Matchstick Productions Film, a quarter of the participants were Spokane community members. While the one-fourth participation from the Spokane community was an improvement, Kaelke also said getting the Spokane community involved and increasing inclusivity for GU Outdoors events is one of the main areas the office is trying to improve.
“We recognize that venturing into an unfamiliar space or heading off to try [something] unfamiliar can be intimidating,” Kaelke said.
As a whole, this semester has been an overwhelming success for GU Outdoors, according to Gannet. He also called it the busiest semester ever.
Through just two and a half months this semester, they have run over 60 trips compared to 100 trips through all of last year. These trips include inflatable kayaking, horseback riding and backpacking.
This upcoming weekend, they are offering a day trip to Banks Lake in Central Washington to go rock climbing for $15.
They have also included new trip locations in Idaho and added new options such as a canoe and climbing trip in which students canoe out to a climbing wall across a lake and climb there for the weekend and canoe back when they are done.
In addition to the new trips, GU Outdoors has also hired a third full-time employee to focus specifically on leading student trips, allowing the office more flexibility to plan and coordinate more student trips and opportunities.
“Gonzaga Outdoors is proud of the progress we have made over the last few years,” Kaelke said. “But we are also very excited for the future of our program.”
Kevin Fagan is a staff writer.