Orientation Adventure Trips


Orientation Leaders 2017

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Orientation Adventure (OA) is the off-campus component of Harvey Mudd’s new student orientation program. Student participants spend two days on excursions with 10–15 of their peers in, above, and around the greater Southern California area, all while being mindful of the program’s most fundamental goal– to foster the development of meaningful relationships between new students.

OA trips are led by two student Orientation Leaders as as well as one or two faculty/staff members.

Below are summaries of last year’s trips. Be on the lookout for new trips soon!

Gnar’ Shredding 101

Guides: Charlee Van Eijk and Richard Ni
Faculty/Staff: Professor Dagan Karp

We will spend most of our time in the water surfing. Whether beginner or pro, everyone can take this time before school to live the Cali dream. With professional surf instructors and lifeguards on hand, anyone can learn to surf even if they have no experience. To take a break from surfing we will hike through dunes and tide pools, or toss discs and play soccer. At night we will camp out on the campsites near San Onofre, making s’mores and memories.

Charlee Van Eijk

Class Year: 2018

Richard Ni

Class Year: 2018

Big Bear and L.A.

Guides: Lam Huynh, David Chu, and Sean Nguyen
Faculty/Staff: Mark Ashley

Do you enjoy the outdoors? Do you like food? Then lam-me take chu on an orienta-sean adven-chu-re! On the first day we will hike and kayak at Big Bear Lake, and at night we will play board games and make s’mores at a cabin. The next day we will travel to LA, where we will visit The Broad museum, and have Japanese ramen for lunch and Korean BBQ for dinner.

Lam Huynh

Class Year: 2018

David Chu

Class Year: 2018

Sean Nguyen

Class Year: 2018

Chillin’ in Catalina

Guides: Youkang Shon and Morgan Frisby
Faculty/Staff: Michelle Harrison

We’ll explore Santa Catalina Island by kayaking, snorkeling, hiking, and camping at Two Harbors! There will also be some relaxing beach time to hang out, play Frisbee and soccer, and get to know each other. On the first day we’ll leave campus and head to San Pedro, where we’ll ferry to the island. After arriving, we’ll take a 6 mile hike to the other side of the island to kayak and snorkel. The next morning there will be a couple options: go on another hike or stay to hang out on the beach, then we’ll head back to campus for the rest of orientation.

Youkang Shon

Class Year: 2019

Morgan Frisby

Class Year: 2019

Snorkeling in San Diego!

Guides: Joanna Ho and Rohin Lohe
Faculty/Staff: Kim Nykanen

Our OA group is planning on going to San Diego. We are going to snorkel, hang out on the beach, spend a night in an AirBnB playing card games and getting to know one another, and eating LOTS of food (especially at hole-in-the-wall taco shops). The next day, we’ll go on a 6.7 mile hike and check out the view from the top of Potato Chip Rock.

Joanna Ho

Class Year: 2017

Rohin Lohe

Class Year: 2017

Bridge to Nowhere

Guides: Hanna Ching and Anna Goetter
Faculty/Staff: Brandon Ice

Do you want to go nowhere? We will go on a 15 mile hike to the bridge to nowhere and the surrounding area. We will go side adventures, including a swim in the river below the bridge. Be prepared to enjoy nature with new friends.

Note: No experience is required, but keep in mind that this is a moderate level overnight backpacking trip.

Hanna Ching

Class Year: 2019

Anna Goetter

Class Year: 2019

L.A. Style

Guides: Anthony Romm and Rachael Kretsch
Faculty/Staff: Paul Hardister

Come learn about LA styles with us! We will be walking around some iconic LA neighborhoods including hiking at Griffith Park to see the Hollywood sign, walking around Beverly Hills, and the Hollywood Walk of Fame. We will also go to the Museum of Fashion and enjoy Southern California food including a picnic/BBQ! Finally, expect time on the beaches of Santa Monica and Venice to have fun in the sun and see all the great locations LA has to offer.

Anthony Romm

Class Year: 2018

Rachael Kretsch

Class Year: 2018

Gorgonio Ascension

Guides: Chris McElroy and Flora Gallina-Jones
Faculty/Staff: : Professor David Money Harris

Our trip explores the San Gorgonio Mountain, the highest peak in Southern California!  We will be on a very difficult hike, up switchbacks and steep slopes to reach the summit.  The group will cover about 20 miles of trails in 2 days; this is one of the more challenging adventures.  The work pays off though; you’ll find amazing views, get to know fantastic people, and maybe even learn a thing or two from Professor and Hiker David “Money” Harris along the way.  We can’t wait to see you on the trail!

Note: No experience is required, but this is a very intense overnight backpacking trip, totaling about 20 miles and 5500 feet elevation gain. Please be cognizant of your fitness level in going on such a trip.

Chris McElroy

Class Year: 2019

Flora Gallina-Jones

Class Year: 2019

Snorkeling and Hiking in the Channel Islands

Guides: Lani Chapko and Sarah Anderson
Faculty/Staff: Professor Lori Bassman

This trip begins with a ferry ride to the Santa Cruz Island where we may spot dolphins, whales, or other marine wildlife. Then, spend the first day exploring marine reserves with snorkels. Day 2 begins with an amazing pancake feast which continues with a gorgeous and fairly strenuous hike (~8-10 miles) around the island with views of the ocean and local wildlife or a relaxing beach day!

Lani Chapko

Class Year: 2017

Sarah Anderson

Class Year: 2017

Yer a Wizard, Bilbo!

Guides: Parnika Sharma and Caroline Sinclair
Faculty/Staff: Jason Santiago

This trips is themed around The Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter. On the first day we will marathon movies, do crafts, play games, and eat like Hobbits! We will have 7 meals: breakfast, second breakfast, elevenses, luncheon, afternoon tea, dinner, supper. On the second day, we will go to LA and visit various bookstores and teashops.

Parnika Sharma

Class Year: 2019

Caroline Sinclair

Class Year: 2019

Wandering Little Tokyo

Guides: Liya Zhu and Angela Sun
Faculty/Staff: Misa Kabashama

Secretly (or not so secretly) an anime fan? Infatuated with Japanese crafts, origami, or want to learn? We welcome everyone who enjoys some aspect of Japanese culture (or just really, really likes green tea kitkats). We will spend our first day in Claremont, exploring the Village, playing games and making crafts in air-conditioned rooms, and marathoning Japanese movies. Our second day has us venturing into Little Tokyo and immersing ourselves fully in Japanese culture, whether it be exploring the Japanese American National Museum, diving into Kinokuniya’s large stash of books, or wandering through the Japanese Village Plaza.

Liya Zhu

Class Year: 2019

Angela Sun

Class Year: 2019

Something for Everyone!

Guides: Lillian Liang and Anji Malpani
Faculty/Staff: Professor Tanja Srebotnjak

Can’t decide which trip to go on? Then this trip is perfect for you! On Day 1, we’ll drive to Big Bear, a quaint town saddled between the San Bernardino Mountains. We’ll spend time hiking among the mountain pines and kayaking on the crystal blue Big Bear Lake. The next day, we’ll head to LA for some beach fun, ending the day with dinner in Little Ethiopia. From the mountains to the beach, this trip has something for everyone!

Lillian Liang

Class Year: 2018

Anji Malpani

Class Year: 2018

Beaches, Beaches

Guides: Zane Bodenbender and Leonardo Huerta
Faculty/Staff: Judy Fischer

We will be going to Huntington beach the first day to go in the water and play beach games. On the second day, we will go to Santa Monica to hang out at the pier and go to the carnival. Both days we will be enjoying local food shops and snacks.

Zane Bodenbender

Class Year: 2017

Leonardo Huerta

Class Year: 2017

L.A. From Crest to Coast

Guides: Sitoё Thiam and Gabby Womark

We want to show the frosh two different sides of LA county, its wilderness and, of course, its beaches. Our trip will consist of hiking the Sturtevant falls Angeles Crest trail on the first day of the trip. The next day we will head to Venice beach to explore the shore and the famous boardwalk. If we have time we can also take a detour into Santa Monica. The night in between will be spent on campus.

Sitoë Thiam

Class Year: 2019

Gabby Womark

Class Year: 2019

Lines and Limes

Guides: Marina Knittel and Renata Paramastri
Faculty/Staff: Professor Greg Lyzenga

Play (many!) boardgames! Watch a film! Shoot fellow frosh (and a prof!) with lasers! Limes! Hang out in an air conditioned room! Play boardgames!

Marina Knittel

Class Year: 2018

Renata Paramastri

Class Year: 2018

Snorkels, Hikers, Stars, Oh My!!

Guides: Zach Evans and Karessa Kron
Faculty/Staff: Professor Stephen Adolph

After riding the waves out to the Channel Islands, we will make camp and prepare for adventure. Even if we don’t see marine life on the way to the island, we will certainly see lots of fish as we swim and snorkel through Scorpion Cove. In the evening, we hope to peer upwards and enjoy the bright stars. On Saturday, we will explore the island further whether that be over the land or under the sea before we float on back to shore and then to Mudd.

Zach Evans

Class Year: 2018

Karessa Kron

Class Year: 2018

Physics in the Real World

Guides: Caitlin Cash and Annie Ludlow
Faculty/Staff: Dean Q

Our trip is essentially an extended physics pun; the first day, we plan on going to Knott’s Berry Farms to see mechanics in action as we ride the roller coasters! Later that night, we’ll hang out and stargaze on the roof of the Shanahan building. The next day, we turn towards E&M with the thrilling game of Laser Tag!

Caitlin Cash

Class Year: 2018

Annie Ludlow

Class Year: 2018

Rock Climbing and Beach

Guides: Sam Hoang and Paige Rinnert
Faculty/Staff: Professor Colleen Lewis

We’re going rock climbing at a local gym (Sender One) and hanging out at Crystal Cove state park! It’s totally okay if you’ve never been rock climbing before–everyone will learn how. There is a large variety of routes available for climbers of all abilities. After climbing, we will spend the next day relaxing at Crystal Cove state park. The park has something for everyone: sandy beaches for bodysurfing, tide pools to explore, exciting trails to hike, and even a super cute historic district!

Sam Hoang

Class Year: 2017

Paige Rinnert

Class Year: 2017

Malibu Outdoor Adventure

Guides: Matt Guillory and Finn Southerland

We will be driving to Malibu Creek State Park where we will do a 7.5 mile hike called Castro Crest that will take us on a journey through the park. After staying overnight in tents at the park, we will drive to Malibu beach. Lunch will be eaten at a restaurant in Malibu upon arrival. After eating, we will enjoy a few hours of kayaking/paddleboarding on the beach. Finally, we will return to Mudd after stopping for dinner at Roscoe’s Chicken and Waffles in Los Angeles.

Matt Guillory

Class Year: 2019

Finn Southerland

Class Year: 2019

Stone Creek Camping Extravaganza

Guides: Liz Lee and Geneva Ecola
Faculty/Staff: Veronica Morganhart

We will drive to Idyllwild between 8 and 9 in the morning to go camping and hiking at Stone Creek Campground at San Jacinto State Park. Upon arrival, we will set up camp and have a picnic lunch at the campground. Once everyone’s settled in, we’ll depart on a day hike loop from the campground (1.5-3 miles). After returning we’ll have a cookout under the stars and go on another, more strenuous hike in the morning to take in the sweeping mountain views before packing up and heading home.

Liz Lee

Class Year: 2017

Geneva Ecola

Class Year: 2019

Venice Beach

Guides: Connor Colombe, Michelle Lanternman, and Mike Adams

Going to Venice beach for a day and a half of fun on the beach. We will be lounging and playing games/sports on the beach, chilling in the water, eating local food, and spending the night in a hostel.

Connor Colombe

Class Year: 2018

Michelle Lanternman

Class Year: 2018

Mike Adams

Class Year: 2018