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Winter in Hanover may be a grind term for most people at Dartmouth College, but it doesn't have to be all about studying! Our wonderful New England setting provides a plethora of outdoor (and indoor if you are that way inclined) activities to try and immerse yourself in. In this blog, I aim to cover some of them that I have done this winter to retain my sanity in the cold!


First of all: Skiing! As you may or may not know, Dartmouth College is one of the two privileged US colleges to have their own skiway on a mountain, meaning all of us students can go ski as we please. There is an hourly shuttle bus for free every day that goes directly from Baker-Berry Library lawn to the skiway (it takes about half an hour) and the ski pass for the season and daily rental is heavily subsidised for students. I personally have skied before, but for those who haven't, there are tonnes of instructors available to help teach you and financial aid applies heavily to the cost of tuition! Cutting up the slopes is the most ADDICTIVE form of procrastination there is.

Fun fact: there are 25 Alex's in the class of '25 (the most common name), and one of them took this photo!

Next up: Sledding; in week 3 of the term it snowed pretty heavily, and so me and my friends Piper, Erica, and Jennifer decided on a whim to go sledding! None of us had sleds, and so we went to CVS to find some. They didn't sell them but they gave us cardboard to use instead which was so kind! In the end though, some random people let us use their sleds, and we had a blast hurtling down the hill at ridiculous speeds and avoiding small children to the best of our abilities. (NO KIDS WERE HURT IN THE MAKING OF THIS BLOG I SWEAR). 

Erica stuck in the snow
Erica after a particularly rough run of sledding! (I really need to do my own photography... Piper Gilbert yet again)

On the way to sledding we partook in another winter activity' though a much less formal one: BETRAYING EACH OTHER WITH SNOW. I broke the unspoken default truce first; I am a literal child when it snows and so I made it about 50 metres from our dorm before I grabbed snow and hurled it at the back of someone. Minutes later, we had descended into a moving every-person–for-themselves all-out violent snowball battle. There are two rules of the snowball war: Trust no-one, and attack everyone. Me and Piper managed to somehow both shove each other into the snow, and in another childishly mentionable event (completely separate from the sledding snowball fight) I recreated that one scene from the Tooth Fairy (a movie I barely remember except this one sleep dust scene) and threw a handful of un-compacted snow into Erica's face as we walked back to our dorms, ultimately causing panic and chaos and another snowball fight (she's still kinda sore about that one hence my mentioning of it here).

SNOWBALLS EVERYWHERE AHAAHAHHAHAHA (again, Piper Gilbert took this...)

And for those of you dedicated readers who hate the winter: I appreciate and have you in mind when I write this blog. Y'know, who needs the stupid snow and stupid weather and stupid outdoors to have fun? Can't there be activities where there is central heating, and I don't need 15,000 layers on to feel a human level of warmth? Well despair not, for Hanover has you covered!

This term so far I have also taken part in many indoor activities! First off I went climbing recently! YES THE CLIMBING GYM FINALLY RE-OPENED WHAT??? We have an awesome climbing gym here at Dartmouth, built for beginners and experts alike; you can book a slot to go (for COVID reasons we can't just turn up at the moment) and the people there are super supportive! I have never formally climbed before and so it was a great experience to dip my toes in the sport. I will definitely be doing it frequently while I am here.

Finally we have sports. Plenty of sports at Dartmouth have their season during Winter term, a major one being Basketball! I recently went to a Basketball game (big up the Big Green), and our team is awesome. A few of my floormates are players, and so it was great to be able to show up and support them, while also getting to watch some highly competitive and interesting basketball in our indoor (heated of course) courts.

Basketball (Credits: Luke Grayson – see Piper take that I CAN take my own photos)

Overall, winter in Hanover is built for people of all types. As long as you are willing to try new things and branch out, you'll find a hobby here. I must admit I was worried about this term being less interesting or fun than last term, but upon doing 4 weeks of it? It is AWESOME. Every term here has its ups and downs but they all are incredible in their own way. Also, even if you don't like the snow, it's SO PRETTY LOOKING OUT THE WINDOW.

Piper after carrying the success of this entire blog on her back with her photography!

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