Carpool FAQs

The De Anza College Outdoor Club doesn’t provide rides, and the club and the college are not responsible for getting people to and from events, or for arranging a ride for anybody. This is because the college could be held responsible if someone had an accident.

I don’t have a car… OR … my vehicle barely makes it to school and back, how can I get to the trip?

you have a few choices:

1) Talk Mom and or Dad into loaning you the family van. Wow, will you be popular! (Be sure you can get the van before you promise rides to people!!!)

2) Talk a friend who can drive into going on the trip.

3) Rent a car.

4) People signed up for the trip can exchange phone numbers and put carpools together.

When people sign up for trips there is a space on the form to say whether or not they will drive or need a ride and whether their email/phone number can be given to other people on the trip (see below). Someone with motivation (they need a ride) or spare time then can call people and try to make arrangements. This way everyone can save money on gas and any park entrance fees.

5) For some trips we have a mandatory pre-trip meeting. People without rides ( and/or overnight accommodations) at that point can get together after the meeting to make ride arrangements.

Experience shows that people who are thinking about going on a trip and don’t sign up until the last minute are less likely to find a ride than people who are actually signed up. It could be that people who have made the commitment to go on a trip are more motivated. They read all the details about a trip, become experts and can tell friends all about the trip. Or it could be that because they have given permission for their email/phone number to be given out that things fall into place.

Below: a rental car on a Grand Tetons trip with kayaks loaded on top and the stuffed Bullwinkle the moose trip mascot. Bullwinkle driving again on the 2007 trip and the 2008 trip. Late at night, and mid-day on 2010 trip.

rental car with kayaks loaded on top: bullwinkle and idaho sign 2007: Phung, Kelly and Christina at Idaho border: three smiling grinning ladies with Idaho sign in background

bullwinkle Idaho sign 2008: welcome to Idaho and college gear hauler trailer: Along a highway, a welcome to Idaho sign, and the De Anza College gear hauler trailer towed by a car with a canoe on top welcome to idaho sign 2010 late at night.: photo taken after dark, vehicle lights in foreground, Welcome to Idaho sign in background welcome to Idaho 2010: sign that says Welcome to Idaho, with mass of clouds in background, trailer of kayaks in foreground

When will carpools leave?

This is frequently not decided until near the date of the trip.

On a typical weekend trip, like a Yosemite trip in 1998, for example, cars left the Bay area at 5:30 a.m., 8 a.m., 9 a.m., noon, 1:30, 2:30 and 5 p.m. People got rides depending on when they had classes or work. Some carpools left at the same time from the same place so they could caravan together and watch out for each other. Plus, it can be fun to trade around passengers as you go and get to know new people.

Most people return on the Sunday afternoon of a weekend trip, but some may stay until very late in the day. Sometimes people need to get to work and leave quite early on the Sunday. Some leave their return time open until that day. There is often no way to predict until near the trip date or on the trip. If you are getting a ride and have a must return time, be certain to tell your driver well in advance.

As for out of state road trips like the Grand Tetons, it can be quite different. Well before a trip, the various people who say they really want to go seem to have no idea of how long of a trip they will make it into. Some will go for under a week, some may decide to make a two week long adventure out of it. Decisions are usually made quite near the trip date.

(Form your carpools off campus. Occasionally cars that are left parked on campus over a
weekend have been trashed!)

How many people in each vehicle?

On a camping trip, especially on our winter trip, you’ll be bringing a lot of gear, so 3 people should ride in a sedan that seats four, and some cars really should only have 2 people.

De Anza wants you to have insurance, properly functioning seatbelts for all passengers, and not so much
gear in the car that it blocks your view out the back window.

What if there isn’t room for all the gear?

Sometimes people rent a small enclosed trailer or borrow a cartop carrier.

Sometimes a car teams up with a truck. Then the car can seat more people because the truck can fit their gear. (Be sure anything in the back of a truck is packed in waterproof plastic in case of rain. Don’t leave a truck unattended with all those tempting bags in it. When you arrive in a park like Yosemite, especially after dark, make getting all food and toiletries out of the truck bed into a food locker a first priority and leave someone in the back of the truck until that is done. Raccoons move quickly and have gotten into trucks and into gear when people ignored this advice.)

The people in these vehicles can divide park entrance fees and gas by arrangement in advance. (If the truck seats three, but the car can seat six with their gear in the truck, it would be fair for the people in the car to pay part of the trip costs for the truck.)

How can people still be friends after sharing a ride on a trip?

people in van at Tuolumne:

the answer, along with ways to keep from being bored on a long road trip, is at:

Road trip advice and etiquette

You will be so much happier if you actually read this and plan ahead!


You might also want to read How to not collide with a deer, Safe driving in rain and fog, Prepare for winter driving, wildlife jams, and/or
Snow chain rentals .

sign no trespass, rr tracks, shopping cart.: bent sign keep right:

Snow camp carpools and driving directions also has the answer to the Outdoor Club winter Yosemite trip question: Which campsite do I park at?

You can find the instructions to turn off the loud beep your car makes when you use the keyless ‘remote’ pushbutton on your keychain to unlock the car. Then you won’t forget about it and wake up everyone in the middle of the night. If you can’t disable it, take the remote off your keychain and put the remote away somewhere and use the key to unlock the vehicle during the trip. If your trunk beeeeps when you open it you need to take it to the dealer to get it silenced, or figure out how to silence it yourself, or not drive that vehicle, or park it away from the campsite / at the very back of a lodging parking lot.


Transporting a single kayak? Read loading a kayak on a car .



For details about De Anza Outdoor Club events and on how to find us to pay for a membership, sign up for events or volunteer, go to:

Outdoor Club Coming Attractions