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What to Expect and What to Bring


Field classes offer students a truly genuine experience by immersing them in a unique, interactive opportunity. The private, 270-acre property is situated on the western edge of New York State’s Catskill Mountains, just 150 miles from New York City. 


The Biological Field Station is easily accessible by car.  Ample free parking is available at the Field Station Pavilion, on unpaved ground.  For those staying overnight in a hotel in downtown Andes, NY, we are located only about 15 minutes away by car.  


The land surrounding the Field Station is accessed by over 5 miles of trails that wind through varying ecosystems from swamps, fields, and mixed forests to high mountain summits. Temperatures can vary greatly from time of year to time of day and it’s always wise to be prepared to ensure a comfortable stay. Weather conditions can easily be checked online before your trip by searching under Andes, NY.


Our Field classes provide students with hands-on experience, offering a glimpse into historical expedition practices. Participants can expect a significant portion of the day to be spent outdoors, being immersed in various weather conditions and interacting with local insects. The program intentionally exposes students to "primitive camp" conditions, emphasizing the challenges encountered by early expeditions. This immersive approach allows students to gain a deeper understanding of historical exploration and the resilience required in demanding working conditions.


When applicable, students can expect to be shuttled around the property in UTV vehicles and participate in short walks on varied terrains. Our classes are designed with a specific curriculum and structure and may not be suitable for students with mobility impairments due to unique requirements and potential challenges. We recommend reaching out to us with questions about accessibility to discuss alternative options that better cater to individual needs.


Suggested packing checklist (dependent upon season and weather):



  • Think moisture-wicking and layers.

  • All clothing items may be subject to rain, mud, dirt, stains, and snags on sharp plant material and other unforeseen damage.

  • Although not required, it may be preferable to pretreat your clothing and boots at home prior to arrival with 0.5% permethrin spray

  • Waterproof rain jacket

  • Waterproof/breathable hiking pants

  • Fleece jacket or wool sweater

  • Warm gloves and scarf or neck gaiter (if applicable in cooler weather season)

  • Loose-fitting long-sleeved shirts and pants (preferable to minimize mosquito and tick bites)

  • Other seasonal clothing (i.e., winter parka, long underwear; lighter layers in summer)

  • Extra change(s) of clothing (especially in case of wet conditions)


  • Waterproof hiking boots

  • Extra socks

  • Other seasonal footwear


  •    Hats

    • Sun hat

    • Rain hat

    • Warm hat (if applicable in cooler weather season)

    • Mosquito head net

    • Headlamp with extra batteries (For night programs when applicable)

  • Sunglasses

  • Sunscreen (SPF 15+)

  • Lip balm (SPF 15+)

  • EPA registered insect repellent

  • Trekking poles

  • A backpack or bag to transport personal items if the class requires travel around the property.

  • Water bottle

  • Assorted zipper lock bags (for your trash while out in the field, wet clothing, etc.)

  • Travel towel

  • Outdoor journal with pen/pencil (Optional)

  • Binoculars (Optional)

  • Phone charger (Optional)

  • Work gloves/gardening gloves (Optional)

  • Waterproof cell phone case (Optional)

  • Medications

    • First-aid kit with personal medications, antiseptic hand wipes, adhesive bandages, pain relief medication, and other personal items

    • Anti-itch cream and/or antihistamine for insect bites or allergic reactions

    • Other treatment for allergic reactions if prescribed (i.e., epinephrine pen)

    • Other toiletries as needed.


Snacks/food : Some classes may include meals; however, we encourage you to bring any additional non-refrigerated food items to make your day more enjoyable. No microwave available.

Note: There is no cellular phone service nor Wi-Fi throughout most of the property. Wi-Fi calling may be available for emergency use inside the Field Station Pavilion only.


No Pets allowed.

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