Fifth Grade fall expedition

Tuesday-Thursday, October 23-25
departs* campus 8:15 am Tuesday
returns* 3 pm Thursday

For their fall expedition, the Fifth Graders will be mountain biking in Western Colorado, in and around Highline State Park in Loma. Outdoor Education program director Collette Newell leads this trip along with the Fifth Grade teachers. Also accompanying this trip are our own Middle School assistants – one or two older students who have been selected as role models for the younger chiildren.

Aspen Country Day School's mission is to develop mind, body, and spirit via our program in academics, arts, and outdoors. The children take two trips per year on their journey through the grades at ACDS, and each trip deepens their understanding of the school’s core values: character, respect, responsibility, community, and perseverance. The Fifth Grade experience is the second year of a two-year mountain biking focus for the children, and they gain confidence by improving their skills year to year. 

Outdoor Education is an integral part of our curriculum, and all students are expected to participate. There is no provision for students to remain on campus while their class is away. The cost of this trip is included in the annual comprehensive activities fee.

*PICKUP stops: 8:15 am ACDS campus; 8:40 am Basalt Town Park; 8:55 am Cowen Center in Carbondale

*RETURN stops: 2 pm Cowen Center Carbondale; 2:15 pm Basalt Town Park; 3 pm ACDS campus

Students learn
  • safe mountain biking skills
  • how to change a flat tire
  • uphill and downhill techniques
  • map-reading, orienteering, and leadership skills
  • desert ecology
  • team-building skills
  • desert camping skills
  • flora and fauna identification
Packing list

Pack everything in a backpack. This is practice for packing for the winter backcountry skiing trip. If you don't have a big enough backpack, the school can lend you one. Please come to school the first morning wearing your biking clothes, ready to ride, with your spare tube (see below) in your daypack.  


    • hat with visor (very important in the desert sun)
    • wool hat 
    • rain jacket and rain pants
    • warm jacket (down coat or ski jacket)
    • pants to wear around camp
    • shorts
    • fleece sweater or jacket
    • gloves or mittens
    • underwear
    • socks (2 pair, no cotton)
    • sneakers
    • bathing suit and small towel
    • warm pants
    • 1 non-cotton t-shirt
    • 1 non-cotton long-sleeve shirt
    • fitted shorts or leggings (something that is not too baggy around the ankles so it doesn't get caught in the chain)

personal equipment

    • toothbrush & travel-size toothpaste
    • lip protection
    • small comb or brush
    • sunglasses
    • small sunscreen
    • headlamp or small flashlight

camping equipment

    • sleeping bag with stuff sack
    • sleeping pad (ridged foam kind that does not need to be inflated)
    • day pack
    • one-quart wide-mouthed Nalgene-style water bottle, filled

camping equipment

    • mountain bike
    • bike helmet (mandatory at all times on any bike)
    • spare bike tube with the right type of valve for your wheel
    • two water bottles on bike or working Camelback (check for leaks)
    • riding shorts (to prevent chafing on long rides)
    • good sturdy shoes for riding
    • optional: bike gloves

NEW: Students will need ONE lunch and SNACKS for THREE DAYS. (The school will provide all other meals.) NO CANDY please!

BIKES must have had a recent tune-up at a local shop. We will spend some fall days practicing riding in and around Aspen, so please make sure your bike is ready for a season of fall riding!

NO ELECTRONICS, please, except a headlamp: this means no cell phones, no iPods or iPads, games, etc. NO sunglasses or glasses with video capabilities, NO smart watches. Only regular or Rx sunglasses and regular watches. "Radio silence" and a chance to unplug are important aspects of the Outdoor Ed program. Photos from the trips will be posted shortly after return for parents and children to share.

Aspen Country Day School
85 Country Day Way Aspen, Colorado 81611
Phone: 970.925.1909
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