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Preparing For Your Trip

Now that you have received a trip assignment, there are just a few more things you need to do to prepare for Orientation Adventure.

  1. All OA trips require a Liability Release Form [pdf] to participate. You can print the Liability Release form [pdf] and fax back to our office at 909-607-9020 prior to arrival at campus. Depending on the trip you are assigned to, you may receive additional forms after August 1. These forms are specific to outside vendors we utilize at particular locations. You will be required to show all  the forms at Check-In on August 25.
  2. If your trip requires a sleeping bag, sleeping pad and/or a multi-day frame pack and you would like to borrow one, please make sure to include the request in your trip sign up form. If you have not reserved on your trip sign up form (in the portal) then we can not guarantee one will be available.
  3. If you will be under 18 at the time of your participation in OA and your parent(s) or legal guardian(s) are not arriving on campus with you in August, download and complete the Liability Release form [pdf] to take with you to campus.

Each of these steps is explained in more detail below. You might also want to review our Arriving at Pomona page for information about arriving on campus in August. As always, a coordinator will be happy to assist you by phone (909 607-2531) or by email (oa@pomona.edu) if you have further questions.

Packing Lists

Please use the appropriate link below to access the packing list for your trip.

Should I buy or should I borrow?
If you do not already own a frame pack, sleeping bag and/or sleeping pad and you will need one for your OA trip, you have the option of borrowing one from OA or purchasing these items yourself. You might consider buying and keeping this gear with you at Pomona if you think you will have a use for it in the future. A number of campus clubs organize wilderness outings during the academic year. Even if you're not very outdoorsy, at least two of these three gear items can prove useful outside of a wilderness context. Here are a few things to think about when deciding whether to rent or buy:

Frame packs: I love my frame pack. It has survived two around-the-world trips and is far and away my favorite and most useful piece of luggage. If you plan to do any international traveling during your time at Pomona, we highly recommend buying an internal frame backpack with a capacity of somewhere between 4,000 and 6,000 cubic inches. You'll be able to use the same pack for any wilderness trips you take while in college. Travel backpacks with zip-away straps for easier baggage checking on planes are widely available, but we don't recommend these. Their suspension systems (shoulder straps, hipbelt, etc.) are generally less extensive than those of their hiking counterparts, making travel packs less comfortable to wear for long periods. In our experience, travel packs are also less durable. Instead of a travel pack, buy a regular hiking pack and stuff it in an army duffel bag before checking it as baggage. These duffel bags can be purchased for about $10 at a military surplus store and come in a variety of sizes as well as colors other than olive green.

Sleeping bags: These can be useful anytime you need to spend a few nights somewhere and won't have a bed. They are also an alternative to carrying a set of sheets or a bedroll when hostel-hopping. A mummy cut bag certified for temperatures down to 20-30 degrees Fahrenheit is probably the most versatile choice. If you expect to be carrying it on your back very often, you should pay the premium for a lighter, more compressible down-filled bag. When not on the road or trail, remember to store these bags properly (i.e. not compressed) so that their insulation will remain effective.

Sleeping pads: These will make the floor a little softer, and you might be able to use them as sleds on a snowy day up at Mount Baldy, but beyond that ground pads don't have many applications outside of wilderness uses.

All three of these items are available from outdoor equipment retailers (e.g. REI, Sports Chalet), warehouse stores (Target, Costco, selection may be limited) and online gear discounters (Campmor.com, REI-outlet.com). Note: whether you end up buying it online or from a physical store, you should always check a backpack model for good fit before purchasing it.