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Outdoor Education

Climbing Everything
Students had the chance to climb everything from short 30-foot cliffs to 2000-foot walls on a recent trip to Red Rock Canyon. WATCH VIDEO
Life Underground
Are you looking for a new kind of adventure? Join us in learning about caves, geology, navigation, rope work, and life underground at 52° Fahrenheit year-round! READ MORE
Clear Your Mind in the Wild
Hiking will keep your mind and body in shape for a lifetime. Learn with your fellow students and enjoy the views along the way. READ MORE
Climb the Adirondacks
Try your hand at roped climbing, and challenge yourself while enjoying beautiful scenery and having a great time with your peers. READ MORE
From Backpacks to Waders
Students, faculty, and staff can rent anything from a skillet to sleeping bags. Good gear, good rates, good folks are all found here.
Learning cannot be limited to the classroom. Our program is consistently ranked as one of the nation's best as it helps students, faculty, and staff explore their sense of place and adventure.

What We Do

We get you out! Whether it is kayaking, tree climbing, snowshoeing, or ice climbing, our goal is to develop your sense of place, leadership, and adventure in the great outdoors.

Regardless of skill level, we take members of the Colgate community out of the classroom and into some of the region's most beautiful natural settings — often just a brief ride from campus.

You can get involved in several different capacities:
OE Mission Statement
Our mission is to provide learning and teaching opportunities through diverse outdoor and experiential opportunities. Our programs allow students to develop leadership skills, strong interpersonal connections, an adventurous spirit, and a sense of place within Colgate, Central, and Upstate New York. Intrinsic to this, we support the mission of Colgate University and the department of Physical Education, Recreation, and Athletics through our commitment to health and wellness, personal growth, social responsibility, active citizenship, and lifelong learning.

Core values in which we believe:
  • Leadership as a mechanism for growth and independence
  • Experiential programming that enriches and supports classroom instruction 
  • Strong and authentic relationships built in a substance-free environment 
  • Continual betterment of self, place, and others 
  • High standards of instruction and professionalism  

Contact us to learn more.

Explore Iceland with Outdoor Ed!


Join other Colgate students for an 11 day adventure (plus travel) in Iceland from
July 6 to July 18*. The trip will include a backpacking trek on the Laugavegur Hiking
Trail, Iceland’s most popular hiking trail. The trek is 34 mi long, and travels through a
wide variety of landscapes from the highlands of Iceland to the South Coast. The
trek will take place over 4 full days, traveling 7.5-9.5 miles per day on moderate
terrain. Nights will be spent in tents and meals will be cooked on camp stoves. The
last day of the trek will end in soak in a natural hot spring! The second portion of the
trip will consist of a series of day outings including a Glacier hike and ice climbing,
an Alpine climb to the summit of a Volcano, River Rafting, a Golden Circle
Sightseeing tour, Sea Kayaking and/or Whale Watching. The Trip will begin and end
in Reykjavík with indoor lodging provided on those nights. All other nights will be
spent camping.

Trip Price: $2,300 + Airfare (RT from Boston/NYC approx. $900). Total ~ $3,200
Participants arrive in Reykjavík Iceland on July 6 and fly out of Reykjavík on July 18
Aid is available for participants on request!

Application is due April 21.

Email Roxanne Benson at rbenson@colgate.edu for an application.
A trip meeting will be held on Wed April 30 at 7 p.m. at Base Camp. Questions can be directed to Abby Rowe at amrowe@colgate.edu or 315-228-7323.

Outdoor Ed Gets a Nod from the Lightweight Community

Group of students poses for a photo while camping

Evan Chartier '14 (pictured far right) is a Colgate Outdoor Ed instructor and a Gossamer Gear Trail Ambassador. With his additional expertise at OE, we have been able to craft a successful Lightweight Camping program that Gossamer Gear is now excited to feature.Thank you, Evan, for helping us get to this point! LEARN MORE AT GOSSAMER GEAR