Despite the looming marathon of late-nights and library sessions that inevitably come with finals, now that we’ve reached the end of ninth week, winter break is truly just around the corner. Most of the campus population will return home (hopefully to warmer climates), leaving Carleton campus quiet and predictably snow-covered.
For those intrepid souls staying over break – whether for comps, work, or simply to escape staying at home – it’s tempting to want to stay nestled in the Complex from Thanksgiving until 2012 dawns. However, there are few things worse than the feeling of claustrophobia that so easily overtakes winter break residents unwilling to brave Minnesota’s first weeks of winter.
The Arb, even as the days grow short and bitter, provides a welcome escape from Complex confines. Take out all that winter gear your parents bought you when they heard you were going to college in Minnesota and put it to good use!
The Rec Center provides cross-country skis and snowshoes that can be rented with just one swipe of your OneCard. Strap on some snowshoes if you’re in the mood to explore the depths of the Arb off the beaten trail, or try your hand at cross-country skiing on one of the Arb’s many groomed paths.
Either way, you’re guaranteed to see a very different landscape than the golden prairie and rust-colored forests of fall term.
Set out in the late afternoon to catch the pale sunlight reflected on wind-sculpted snowdrifts, and make sure to adventure outside post-dinner time to witness the serenity that is truly unique to a rural winter’s night.
Relish the sight of your own breath, the sting of December on your cheeks, the cold air rushing into your warm lungs – and know that you’ll be much more prepared for the chilly months of winter term than your roommate who lives in California.
Rae Wood ’12,
for the Cole Student Naturalists