Trips by Category


Classic Outdoors

In 1975, the first Colby Outdoor Orientation trip took 15 first-year students to Katahdin—Maine's highest peak. Two upper-class student leaders and a philosophy professor led this first trip. Since then, COOT has been an integral part of the Colby Orientation program. These traditional trips include journeys in some of Maine's most wild and scenic mountains, forests and waterways.


These trips are well suited to students that are comfortable in the outdoors. Beginners as well as those with hiking or backpacking experience are welcome. Located on various sections of the famous Appalachian Trail, as well as the western portion of the newly designed Grafton Loop Trail, participants will enjoy leaving the car behind as they backpack from campsite to campsite each night. These trips enjoy a time-honored "cross-COOT" experience--meeting up with another COOT group hiking in the opposite direction on the trail.

All of these trips involve rustic, backcountry camping and range from moderate to strenuous in exertion level.

An internal or external frame backpack (4500+ cubic inches), broken-in hiking boots, a sleeping bag (rated to 30 degrees) and a sleeping pad are required for backpacking trips.


Katahdin, Acadia National Park, Saddleback Mountain--explore some of Maine's true treasures. Also, discover some of its best kept secrets such as the Cutler Coast, Gulf Hagas and more! These trips are a wonderful introduction to the outdoors in Maine. Basecamp trips "make home" at one site and explore throughout the course of the trip whether hiking, site-seeing or beach hopping.

These trips generally enjoy frontcountry camping with access to modern amenities with a few exceptions such as Gulf Hagas. They range from mild to moderate to strenuous in exertion level.

A sleeping bag (rated to 30 degrees) and a sleeping pad are required for these trips.


A classic Maine experience! Enjoy open water paddling on the Debsconeag Lakes, Seboeis Lake, or the St. Croix River. These backcountry trips paddle from campsite to campsite each night taking in the scenic beauty of some of Maine's most beautiful mountain's and lakes.

These trips involve rustic, backcountry camping and range from moderate to strenuous in exertion level.

Participants should be comfortable with water-based activities and have established swimming skills.

A sleeping bag (rated to 30 degrees) and a sleeping pad are required for these trips.

GULF HAGAS B - They killed it man

Don't need any



Trips focusing on the arts allow participants a taste of the fine arts in pristine settings which are guaranteed to spark creative inspiration! All arts trips are based out of cabins with access to modern amenities.
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Close-to-Home Adventures

These trips provide participants with an alternative to the more traditional COOT experience. Taking place close to campus these trips will be based out of cabins with access to modern amenities. Becoming acquainted with "wild" places right in Colby's backyard will be the focus of these highly engaging trips.
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Environment and Civic Engagement

These hands-on, service learning opportunities allow students to become engaged with a range of community partners with a special emphasis on issues impacting the environment. Whether your interest lies with improving state and national parks, learning about sustainable lifestyle choices or living and working on a local organic farm, Environment and Civic Engagement trips are sure to be a rewarding educational experience!
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Maine is a winter wonderland!

Taking place during the mid-year orientation program in January, these trips offer students classic winter experiences such as dog sledding, cross-country skiing and snow shoeing along with exciting adventures such as ice climbing.

Think snowball fights and warm hot chocolate with friends--all waiting to welcome you home to Colby. First-Year LINKs will join each trip to assist with the transition to living and learning on-campus. Add top-notch Iced COOT leaders to the mix and you've got a recipe for a truly welcoming and fun-filled orientation experience!

Whether you are currently studying abroad in Salamanca or Dijon, transferring from another institution or simply joining us at the mid-year, we're excited to meet you!

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Specialty Outdoors

These trips introduce participants to a wide range of more specialized outdoor activities. Experience raging waters, scale high cliffs above the sea, paddle or sail along the gorgeous Maine coastline! Unique experiences, once-in-a-lifetime memories!
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Wellness trips help participants develop a deeper understanding of and connection to themselves, others and the natural world. Whether through yoga, mindfulness and meditation or cooking with local, sustainable foods, the outdoors is a powerful setting for nurturing and nourishing the soul.
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