Posted by: Rachel Carpenter | April 21, 2016

To Build a Quinzhee

With spring unfolding all around us, it’s no doubt that folks are getting pretty excited for this new season on campus. After all, CS12 students haven’t known much of our campus without snow. They haven’t experienced the wonders of biking the trails on a sunny day, hearing the loon calls across the lake, and stargazing in the warm spring air.

At the same time, some of us can’t help but feel nostalgic for the times (barely more than a week ago!) when snow covered our campus in a Narnia-like blanket, allowing us to tromp through the forest knee-deep in its bounty and experience the trails on skis.

One of the highlights of winter adventures on campus included the building of a quinzhee. Similar to an igloo, a quinzhee is a shelter made from snow; while an igloo is comprised of hard blocks of snow, a quinzhee is formed by gathering up snow in a large pile, and then hollowing it out.

One weekend in late February, students helped build a quinzhee. This proved to be quite a labor-intensive project, which was a welcome way to keep warm. They built it large enough for about 10 students to fit comfortably. Students even had the opportunity to pile in for a weekend sleepover!

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