“A full moon brings new beginnings,” said Sierra Nevada College Junior Sydney Pinkerton. “This is a time to reflect on your lives, and know what can and can no longer serve you today and in your future.” Spring has arrived, and for her final service learning project in Associate Professor Katie Zantos’ class, Pinkerton invited her fellow peers to take part in an Equine-Eco Art Therapy retreat for the day in Washoe Valley at Laird and Melinda Blackwell’s Equus Insight farm.
We started the day by drawing a card from a basket and reading aloud our personal connection to ideas like rhythm and synchronicity, communication, intimacy, firepower and uncertainty. Keeping this within the group, we began a drawing activity with charcoal, called “Body Movement and Interpretation.” With two hands, we created symmetrical images that best portrayed our energy and feelings in that very moment. However, the interpretation wasn’t up to us so much as it was up to the animals. We worked with rescued and wild horses as well as a llama named Joey, and a donkey named Gus, who were our “therapists” for the day. It was miraculous to see their reactions to each of our stories, knowing exactly whom to give extra love and attention to.
“This event is about nurturing our nonverbal communication with our right brain, it’s the most important aspect in communicating effectively,” Pinkerton said.
“Interacting with the animals was an enlightening experience that allowed me to let go of a lot of things I couldn’t seem to put into words. Nonverbal communication is something that can be easily forgotten when interacting with other humans, but we are constantly sending signals without language to everything we interact with,” said Senior Emily Provencher.
After lunch the group rejoined and practiced their best “catch and halter” in the ring, while they attempted to move the herd. After a few tries, each person in the group tried to make Rosa, Sweet Pea, Dancer, and even Gus their very best friend before politely painting on their backs. It was a silly game at first, fast walking and quick stopping just to get one stroke of the paintbrush in, but then the students began to find a special bond in the silence shared between the animals and themselves.
Marina McCoy, Vice President of SGA said, “I can’t remember the last time that I was that relaxed. Without even trying I just had a huge smile on my face,” said Marina McCoy, Student Government Association Vice President. “Everything was calming and well thought out and now looking back at it I wasn’t really thinking. I let my mind go blank, which is huge for me, and overall really rewarding. We all worked together as a team, and our leaders were amazing, such happy, loving and caring people. I really couldn’t have asked for a better day.”
Leaving the farm refreshed, and with new perspectives, we continued our session at Washoe Lake to create our own nature nicknames through art, and participate in a silent communication drawing with a partner. With heavy emphasis on creating a bridge between left and right brain nonverbal expression, the day felt both fulfilling and mind-opening. We live in a world where 90% of our communication is nonverbal, yet we focus on the 10% of verbal communication, just to get in that last word. It was a great lesson for all of us to remember that our actions speak louder than our words. Verbal communication should be left to our most impeccable words, and some things are simply better left unsaid.
SNC STUDENTS groomed and painted animals at the Equus Insight farm in Washoe Valley.
Many Sierra Nevada College Ski and Snowboard team members kept on their skis but traded winter for the wake, and joined the SNC Water Ski Club for the last three tournaments.
”Almost all of us have been competitive freestyle, snowboard and alpine racers for the school, ” Club President Cory Johnson said. “That really helps us to prepare for the trick, jump and slalom event when we start competing again this spring.”
The Water Ski club attended their first spring event on March 28-29 at Newberry Springs, CA. The club drove six hours down south with a team consisting of three seniors; John Wilkins, Cory Johnson and a first-timer Spencer Fisch. Fisch joined the team two days before the tournament.
”Arizona State University did a phenomenal job hosting the spring opener tournament this past weekend,” Fisch said. ”I am new to the sport and felt really comfortable with the vibe and support given. I am more than excited for upcoming tournaments, especially the one hosted by UC Davis.”
Fisch landed all his tricks and two out of three of his long jumps on his first tournament ever.” He surprised every person on the side lines,” Johnson said. “People from other schools begin to wonder what we are having for breakfast since we are constantly landing our jumps on the hardest event.”
The club was formed last fall and has been growing since the first tournament in Chico, CA. The club currently only has two women competing, but is looking to recruit more for the last two spring tournaments.
“We have few alpine and freestyle team members joining us for the spring, but we hope that other students would be interested as well,” Johnson said. ”One of the biggest topics at the moment is that where are we going to be practicing and where do we get the funding.”
The water ski club drove to Chico on April 4-5 and practiced over the weekend with Chico Water Ski Team president who let the club train on his private lake. SNC Ski Team member Cannon O’Brien joined the club for the last two tournaments to enjoy competitive skiing not just on snow, but also on water.
”After I was done skiing on snow with our ski team and Branko, I thought it would be fun to spend some time skiing on water instead of snow,” O’Brien said. ”We went to Chico to train for our second tournament this upcoming weekend.”
The club competes in the National Collegiate Water Ski Association (NCWSA) tournaments and is skiing with athletes that have competed in a high level internationally. The next tournament will be hosted by Cal Poly at Ironwood Ranch in Arvin, CA. The club will drive to Arvin with 10 to 12 people on April 10.
The Sierra Nevada College ski and snowboard teams dominated during the week and were able to bring back home a lot of hardware. The teams won a total of eight team National Championship titles, 24 individual podiums and four overall team National Championship titles.
During a typical school week, Senior Tom Loeschner does more than attend classes at Sierra Nevada College. In his free time, he could be searching for dead trees in the Tahoe National Forest, fashioning a bench in his garage or discussing a custom table for a resident of Incline Village.
“There’s a good adage that I never believed until I started my business,” said Loeschner. “It’s ‘Work hard for eight hours a day for somebody else, or be the boss and work sixteen hours a day’.”
Recently at I.V. Coffee Lab in Incline Village, Loeschner installed new custom benches and a coffee bar, both fashioned from local wood as part of his wood and metalworking business, Greywood.
“I strive to be green in my business, so all my slab wood is cut from dead trees in the Tahoe National Forest. I gather the trees myself. I fell them and I mill them myself, and then I build the furniture myself. From tree to finished piece it’s all hands on,” Loeschner said.
Tom has also built a table for Lighthouse Coffee in Sparks, NV, and custom pieces for homes in the Tahoe and Reno area.
Junior Terra Breeden has started two of her own businesses in the past, but she feels her most recent endeavor into athletic clothing has been more successful because of the experience gained during these two attempts.
“We’re still learning so much even though; we’re in our third year,” Breeden said.
The athletic and yoga clothing industries are currently the fastest growing in the clothing industry, according to Breeden. Her clothing business, Indah Yoga, is selling at Gaialicious in South Lake Tahoe and High Altitude Fitness in Incline Village. In addition, Indah Yoga is selling clothes in stores as far away as White Fish, Montana and San Diego, California.
“As a company we’re striving to be something that’s really unique and creative, but also really comfortable and affordable,” said Breeden.
Senior Henry Phillips, a student veteran and non-profit owner at SNC, wanted to do something more for young veterans transitioning to civilian life. Outside of class time, he has started the Mountain King’s Motorcycle Club Family, to provide assistance to this demographic of college students.
“What their purpose is, is to provide one on one mentorship to at-risk or disadvantaged veterans to get them on their feet,” said Phillips.
Phillips plans to buy property in the Tahoe area to serve as a resting point for veteran’s who have just recently left the service, most of whom are older than the average college student. The average college student that has served in the military in the United States is 29 years old, according to Phillips. He says that this can be a challenging transition for many of them.
“We get a little bit of assistance on the way out the door, but it’s almost like the mindset of the college graduate. Our safety net is being taken away from us. We have to survive on our own now,” Phillips said, “A lot of veterans shut down.”
Several students enter into their own personal business ventures at SNC, and Phillips attributes this trend to SNC’s business department, which he believes has fostered an environment of entrepreneurship and support.
“It’s the recognition that come from peers and faculty that really drive people to do things.”
Courtesy of Facebook & Indah Yoga
Senior Tom Loeschner breaks down a tree for his custom woodworking business, Greywood.
Junior Terra Breeden poses in one of her athletic yoga outfits from her company “Indah Yoga”.
BY JOHANNA TIKKANEN
Before preparing for regionals at Sierra at Tahoe ski resort, the Sierra Nevada College Ski & Snowboard team competed on Jan. 24- 25 at Squaw Valley. The last years USCSA National Champions defended the title by winning every single USCSA race they attended.
On Saturday Jan. 24, Jaka Jazbec and Andri Arnason were the only two men competing for the SNC mens alpine team. Jazbec took a victory over teammate Arnason who placed second before Stanford’s Evan Eyuboglu, who placed third. The Women’s alpine team took places 1-5. Melissa Daniels took an impressive victory ahead of Emilie Lamoureux and Johanna Tikkanen who placed second and third respectively.
”The team has been working hard for months, and it is starting to pay off.” ski coach Branko Zagar said. ”The lack of snow hasn’t stopped us from training.”
The team practices at home mountain Diamond Peak, six days a week. ”Training at Diamond Peak has been good, except that sometimes we really have to be careful where we set the gates since there is not always enough snow to cover the ground.” Freshmen Mihaela Kosi said.
The snowboarders continued SNC dominance by winning in both men’s and women’s races on Saturday Jan. 24. at the Squaw Valley. slalom race. Junior Marco Gooding placed third right after University of Nevada, Reno athlete Reed January, who placed second. Ian Wieczorek, Cory Rudolph and Adam Lechner followed close behind at fourth, fifth and sixth spot. On the women’s side, Brooke O’Neill dominated the race by winning with almost ten seconds in front of UC Berkley’s Kimberlie Le, who finished in second place, and UC Davis’s Lauren Uchiyama, finishing in third.
The momentum kept going the next day when both the men’s and women’s teams dominated the giant slalom race. Jazbec and Arnason placed first and second beating the rest of the skiers with multiple seconds. The women also dominated the race by having all five skiers in top 5. Johanna Tikkanen took the victory in front of teammate Caroline Klaesson and Emilie Lamoureux. Melissa Daniels and Twwea Palic followed close behind in the fourth and fifth spots. The Alpine team travels on Feb. 4 to Snow King, Wyoming for the FIS Elite series competitions before focusing on regionals and nationals.
The next day the SNC men’s snowboard team filled the podium with Frederick McCarthy, Macky Leal and Marco Gooding placing first, second and third. A total of eight SNC athletes placed in Top 11. SNC athlete Brooke O’Neill continued her winning streak by also winning the women’s race. ”We have a lot of talented athletes on the team and I have no doubt that we are going to be more than ready for this years nationals,” snowboard coach Jon Cherry said.
A couple of SNC snowboard team athletes competed at a USASA slope style and rail jam competition on Jan 31- Feb 1 at Boreal. The first competition was slope style in which SNC athletes took top 3. Austin Smith took the victory in front of teammates Adam Lechner and Brian Walther who placed in second and third. Second competition was a back-to-back rail jam. Austin Smith won the first competition and Adam Lechner the second one.
The USCSA National Championships will be located at Mt. Bachelor, Oregon on March 1-7 where the SNC Ski & Snowboard team will be defending their title. Go Eagles!
This Saturday seven Sierra Nevada College Geology Club Students pilled into a car to go hike points of Mount Rose to collect minerals and crystals.Secretary of the geology club Joe Paolini said, “Everyone who participated today was really involved.”
Students look mostly for double terminated crystals. This is when the end of a crystal grows in such a way that it forms flat faces that intercept one another on a certain axis depending on the mineral. Crystals that form a terminated point on both ends are referred to as doubly terminated. We found multiple specimens exhibiting this geological anomaly. Once the more experienced hunters determine when the group had arrived the students scatted with their hunting hats on. They sifted through the top layer of dirt in the surrounding areas looking for their crystals.
“Jai found quite a few crystals in this one particular area” Paolini said, “So everyone just went over to dig the patch up.”
Jai Odyssea, president of the club, said, “There’s probably a pocket”. The students flocked the patch. “The north eastern corner of the Tahoe basin is a fascinating area geologically,” said Odyssea, “There are multiple different rock types from different eras of activity meeting in this area which often is a sign for metamorphic activity”.
There are three types of rocks, Sedimentary, which are formed from particles of sand, shells, pebbles, and other fragments of material, Igneous, which are formed when magma (molten rock deep within the earth) cools and hardens, and Metamorphic, which are formed under the surface of the earth from the metamorphosis (change) that occurs due to intense heat and pressure.
Paolini said, “Because there are multiple different types of rock meeting in this area it is more likely for minerals to be coming up through the earth’s crust. Which indicates that rocks have undergone metamorphose in its form”.
The crystals and minerals that were found in abundance on this trip were smoky quartz, feldspar, and epidote. Smoky quartz is a grey translucent-opaque variety of quartz. The smoky color results from free silicon, formed from the silicon dioxide by natural irradiation. It terminates into six faces so it shapes in a hexagonal form.Feldspar constitutes approximately 60% or the earths crust, it forms directly from cooling magma. Its crystals are typically colorless/pale in color. Epidote is a monoclinic crystal system, which means its vectors are of unequal length and size. It usually takes on a pistachio-forest green tint but can be found in grey, brown, or nearly black.
“The examples of feldspar that we collected had phenomenal examples of cleavage” student Grant Long said.
Cleavage is the tendency of a mineral to break along flat planar surfaces as determined by the structure of the mineral. Student Mona Ramirez found a terminated smokey quartz point with a greenish hue. Paolini and Odyssea speculate that it is an inclusion of the epidote they were finding in the area inside of the smoky quartz.
Odyssea said, “We scouted an area near incline creek with interesting rock formations. You’ll find quartz everywhere you go in the Tahoe Basin.”
Sierra Nevada Student tend to wander a fair amount but usually with their eyes focused on the lake. These students have a knack to appreciate the things that are usually over looked and stepped. Between the leaders knowledge, support of Science Professor Andy Rost, geographical location, and student passion the club will make great trips this school years
By Joie Rhein
BY NATALIE CLARK POSTLES
The canyon is filled with smoke making it a struggle, dangerous even, for anyone in the area to breathe. As the King Fire burns just up from the South Fork of the American River, Sierra Nevada College students enrolled in the Outdoor Adventure Leadership (ODAL) intro class prepare to begin their whitewater rafting guide course just outside of Coloma, California.
It is Saturday, Sept. 20, and the ODAL class is a day behind schedule. The class arrived a few hours ago due to the high levels of air toxicity in the area, and the question on everyone’s mind is simple: Will we be river rafting today? Or will we turn around and go home because of the low air quality?
Water was released from the dam late Saturday morning shortly after our arrival on the river, later than the normal Friday release. Whether this is due to the fire or other causes is still unknown, but the SNC students continue on with their preparation to raft down the South Fork, many for the first time ever. We had quite the range of experience on our trip, ranging from students with little to no experience to others that had worked previous summers as whitewater guides, making it a beneficial teaching and learning experience for students of all levels.
As we got closer to embarking on our trip down the river one of the guides, and ODAL professor Daryl Teittinen prepared for what was about to come: level two, three, and on our final day three plus rapids. Easy enough for any beginner, yet entertaining enough for anyone with a bit of experience and an awesome opportunity to help fellow students learn. The SNC class came within 15-30 miles of from the fire, a comfortable distance; with the winds blowing the smoke from the fire in opposite direction and out of the canyon not only making the trip more enjoyable, but possible.
As said by Lynn Noel in her book Voyages: Canada’s Heritage Rivers, “the first river you paddle runs through the rest of your life. It bubbles up in pools and eddies to remind you who you are.” While many of us were questioning if the trip would even happen, we pulled through, and many people left with a trip that will “run through” the rest of their lives, whether it was their first or not.
BY CALHOUN BOONE
The weekend of Oct. 10 -12, the Sierra Nevada College 201 Outdoor Adventure Leadership, ODAL, class went on a field expedition to the Carson River where they hiked for three days over the terrain of a popular white water rafting run.
“As an avid whitewater rafter myself, it was awesome to hike the river bed of a river that I have rafted with my family before, and to see the skeleton of the river bottom with very little water in it,” said one ODAL student.
The Carson River is undammed above the section that the ODAL class hiked, so there was very little water left from last season, making it shallow and easy to travel across by foot.
The trip consisted of 21 river miles that the class traveled with only the guidance of a series of topographic maps. Because the ODAL 201 Leadership course focuses primarily on individual leadership skills, ODAL Program Director Rosie Hackett, left it up to the class to map out their own route while she sat back and followed her student’s lead.
“There was no distinct trail to follow and nothing to show us which way to go other than the river and our maps, so it was awesome to get to practice our map reading skills and really helped all of us as students gain competence in our toolbox of outdoor skills,” said ODAL student Jake McIntyre.
In March of every year, students are encouraged to apply for the position of Wilderness Orientation (WO, pronounced:Whoa) leader. While many applicants are Interdisciplinary Studies majors with either a concentration or minor in Outdoor Adventure Leadership (ODAL), openings are not limited to this degree. Wilderness Orientation is a hands-on opportunity for students to showcase their competency as outdoor leaders while fostering relationships with incoming students.
WO leaders offer a great experience to new students every fall before school officially begins. While the new students undergo an exciting adventure, student leaders grow and learn as well. Not only do the leaders mature into their own style, but they also have the opportunity to create intentional communities within Sierra Nevada College.