Dear students & families,
As we are two weeks out from the start of our program(Woohoo!), I’m taking some time to share with you final details on packing, gear, and technology use. We’ve started connecting with many of you via the phone, and it’s been so fun to get a glimpse of the personalities that will be blending into our shared community come July! I’m looking forward to reading your introduction Yak posts, and meeting you all in person. In the meantime, I hope this post helps you get ready to roll. Included are general packing guidelines, more detailed notes on gear suited for our course, and some words regarding our technology use policies on program.
Packing For Travel
During our program, we will be moving around quite consistently. However, we don’t have a backpacking component like most Dragons trips. Instead, we’ll have a truck and large van that will carry us and all of the gear we need to keep ourselves warm, dry and fed from place to place. We’ll be staying in places for 3-5 nights at a time on average, the majority of which will be tent-camping in vehicle accessible spots, often by the lake and always beautiful and interesting. At the end of the trip, we’ll embark on our 6-night kayak expedition in the Apostle Islands. This means it will be important to have a good packing set up for mobile life! My suggestion is to have a day-pack and a camp-pack. You can almost think of it as your carry-on and your checked bag on a flight.
Your camp-pack should be a soft duffel or similar kind of bag, with enough space to hold your clothes & camping gear, including your tent, pad, sleeping bag & mess kit. This bag will mostly live between the truck and your tent, functioning as a way to transport your camp gear from place to place as well as a wardrobe of sorts in your tent. It would be good to have some extra room in your camp-pack for other things you’d like to have around but won’t necessarily carry with you everyday, like a couple good books, a small game or two, or art/craft supplies.
Your day-pack should be a small and light backpack that can hold your everyday essentials, such as a notebook, sunscreen, some snacks and water, and maybe a few spare pieces of clothing, including rain gear! This should be a pack you’re comfortable wearing everyday, as you’ll likely take it with you on any excursions out of camp for a few hours to a day at a time. It’s a good idea to have a packable towel and clothes you’re comfortable swimming in as part of your day-pack; the lake is never far away! Make sure the things you need fit into each respective bag before you set off for the airport.
Notes On Gear
The standard packing list included in your Course Preparation Manual is mostly based off of trips that include a strong backpacking or hiking component. As I previously described, on our program we will be mostly car camping, with the addition of a kayaking expedition out into the Apostle Islands at the end. Although most of that list still applies, I have included some additional notes here on how to prepare for our specific itinerary.
As you should be aware, at Dragons we have a limited tech use policy on our programs. Unplugging from the constant noise and chatter of the digital world allows us to be much more present with each other, and reach a deeper level of learning and relationship with what is going on around us. It is a dynamic that can be hard for many of us at first, especially in our increasingly tech-focused society, but that separation anxiety always dissipates into a clear, grounded feeling that is a part of what makes our programs so powerful. Here are a few reminders about how our tech policies function:
That’s all for now! As I’ve said, please reach out with any additional questions or clarifications before the start of our program if you need! We are excited to be together, and happy to help you prepare for our adventures in any way we can.