SCHS marine science Catalina trip: highs and lows

CATALINA morning hike displays the gorgeous views and colorful cabins where SCHS marine students stayed. Cassidy O’Toner

Talie Folsom | Arts and Entertainment Editor

October 15, 2021

SCHS students in Ms. Brislen’s IB Marine Science class left for the weekend on the annual Catalina trip on October 8, 2021. As the students returned to school on Monday, critiques and highlights of the trip were swirling around campus. Some enjoyed it more than others–many students having serious opinions on the lows of the trip.

“It was a really fun bonding experience,” senior Portia Kipper said. “We snorkeled, kayaked, and learned about different species.” Kipper spoke on the specific highlights of the trip; however, she had a few criticisms as well. She explained that the camp counselors “treated the students like they were five.” At the same time, younger kids from Capo Valley attended the camp alongside “a bunch of 17 and 18-year-olds,” explaining the “elementary school treatment” that SCHS students received.

STUDENTS on the two hour boat ride to Catalina. Michelle Cortez

The transportation aspect of the trip was also a common hardship. Students had a far ride to Long Beach on the bus in order to board the boat to Catalina. The boat ride was two hours, much longer than the general 45 minutes. The delays were due to the oil spill off the coast of California. Throughout the trip, the students participated in various activities as well as labs to create an engaging yet informative weekend.

“The trip had many highs and lows for many different reasons,” senior Eleazar Hernandez said. Hernandez enjoyed his time spent in cabins and the many laughs on the trip, but other events made the trip a struggle. “Snorkeling was very cool, but putting on soaking wet suits was impossible, and I got so many leg cramps from snorkeling.” The senior also had a tough time with the water activities, especially because he flipped over his kayak as he did not “choose [his] partner wisely.”

ARTWORK on the Catalina trip t-shirt drawn by senior Anita Fereidooni. Anita Fereidooni /Portia Kipper

The most popular complaints of the trip concerned the food and water. “The food was very dry and tasted very bad,” Hernandez claimed. “The water tasted like pool water, so everyone was always thirsty and hungry.” The campers who brought their own snacks luckily escaped the apparently “gross” food and water.

Despite more noticeable lows, many highlights reflect the benefits of the experience. The group participated in many fun water activities such as kayaking and late-night snorkeling. They went on hikes that presented breathtaking views and saw multiple fascinating sea creatures. Not to mention they all were able to get cool matching t-shirts designed by talented SCHS students.

When comparing the highs and lows of this interesting Catalina trip, was it worth it for the students to go? Clearly, there were lows on the trip, however, by talking and laughing about them, it makes the trip and the memories worth it. Students are finally able to go on school field trips after missing out on these opportunities last year, with the pandemic causing school to be online.

The scoop of the Catalina trip is what makes the trip extra memorable. Ms. Brislen has also spoken about future field trip opportunities for her class, so there are more memories to be made. SCHS has field trips for different classes as well, so make sure to celebrate the highs and come together to relate to the lows. The memories and experiences will be worth it.

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