Sunset Snowshoeing
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A friend pointing to the sky
My trippee Simon ushering in the sunset
It was a fateful day in early august. My phone had already been buzzing relentlessly from GroupMe messages and Facebook notifications, so I stepped out of work to finally see what all of the hype was about. I was instantly met with a present surprise: our housing assignments had appeared in our inboxes, and I was eager to see where my freshman home would be. Judge 103. It looked like any other square on the building floorplan, a decent sized room all to myself. I quickly reached out to everybody I knew, frantically looking for future floormates and friends nearby, but I was often met with a peculiar response. Whenever I’d say “yeah, I’m in Judge, in the River Cluster,” I was often met with an “I’m sorry,” or, “better luck next year,” or, “you better bring a bike.”
A sunset on the docks
A Ledyard sunset on the Connecticut

So, when the time came, I finally moved into the seemingly infamous River Cluster. Rumors say that it’s actually closer to Vermont than it is to the Green, and some like to claim that we have our own zip code. I found instantly that the dorms themselves are actually very nice, but the jokes held seemed to hold some truth; nested behind Thayer and Tuck, the River (Cluster) is approximately 813 feet and 4 inches from the Green, and that’s if you cut through buildings and across the cemetery (which I don’t recommend). However, in spite of the distance and all of the jokes about our relative isolation, the River actually has some absolutely incredibly features to offer, and I couldn’t be happier to live there today. The first plus of the River is that, well, it’s right next to the actual Connecticut River. While you unfortunately can’t see it from dorm windows, it’s only a short walk away down a couple flights of stairs. The perfect spot for swimming, kayaking, canoeing, or anything involving water, the river is a boatload (haha) of fun for anyone who doesn’t mind getting wet. Further, for all of my friends in the Ledyard sub-club of the DOC, they often express jealousy about how close I am to the riverside clubhouse; oh, how the tables have turned.

An inverted climbing wall
The infamous Wavewall at the climbing gym
Also, only in the River do we have the wonderful climbing gym in the basement of the Maxwell dorm! If you’ve never tried climbing, I really recommend that you give it a shot; you have no excuse not to if you live as close as I do (right across the street). Plus, the first term membership is free for first-year students, so you can give it a try for no cost! I really hope that this post has cleared up the bad air surrounding the River, and I would say that if you’ll lucky enough, maybe you too will be able to feel the cool wind on your face while coasting on your bike down Tuck Drive; there’s no other feeling like it in the world! Good luck, and I hope to see you all next fall!