In partnership with Atlas Workshops
, Lawrenceville students will travel to Iceland for a serious trek in the highlands, along with exploration of Reykjavik and western Iceland’s coastal areas. We will engage in place-based learning about Iceland’s cultural and geological histories: the Vikings who originally settled the island in the late 800s AD; the current cultural, economic, and ecological makeup of the country; and the active and sometimes violent volcanic geology. That same geothermal activity means that Iceland has one of the greenest energy systems in the world - almost all of the country’s energy comes from renewable resources (geothermal and hydropower). Leading up to and during the program we will also read and discuss some of Iceland’s literary history; the Sagas of the Icelanders are some of the most strange and interesting medieval-era texts from Europe. The culminating event will be a five-day-long wilderness trek on the famous Laugavegur hiking path from the geothermal area of Landmannalaugar to the glacial valley of Þórsmörk and Skogafoss.
The weather in Iceland is chilly and wet, even in the summer. Expect temperatures ranging from 35-65˚F, and lots of rain or even sleet and snow in the highlands. If this type of adventure sounds exciting, then this is the trip for you!
Important Considerations / Student Expectations
Much of this program occurs in a wilderness environment, one often known for its "harsh beauty." Hazards exist from the land to the climate, conditions of which students will be instructed to navigate and manage as part of the curriculum.
Students will be responsible for setting up campsites, caring for their own equipment, and participating in meal preparation. Mastering these skills in the field will contribute to the teamwork and leadership that each member is expected to bring to the expedition. Students should be able to sustain a moderate level of exertion for hours on end rather than "quick sprint" fitness. Students on courses quickly realize that it's not about getting to camp quickly, it's about getting to camp efficiently with enough energy to carry on for the time it takes to build sturdy camps in exposed conditions and cook great meals.
Students should be prepared to carry a pack up to 40% of their body weight (most packs will weigh 30-50 pounds) on terrain that will vary from even trail to uneven off-trail travel and from horizontal to steep talus or snow.
All passports must be current seven months past the return date of any school sponsored trip. Please check and plan accordingly.