Frequently Asked Questions
When/what are meetings?
Weekly meetings are every Wednesday rain or shine @ 7:30 pm @ alternating locations between La Val’s on Northside and other locations! All will be posted to the listserv and discord prior to meeting. All are welcome — you do not need to be a member to attend weekly meetings. There is no agenda for weekly meetings. Just come to meet other people and have a good time!
Why should I become a member?
Members have access to two big perks: the gear shed where you can rent out free gear (sleeping bags, backpacking backpacks, camping stoves, and more) and the listserv, which is a email list with over 3500 members. Use the email list to sign up for posted officer trips, find friends/hiking buddies, and invite others to your own trips!
How long does a membership last?
The $15 membership is good for the rest of your life beginning on the day you sign up.
When do the hikes start?
Hikes occur year-round and are always being posted on the listserv. There is no start/end date for when trips happen.
I don't have a lot of experience in the outdoors, is this okay?
Yes! As long as you have a good attitude and are excited to get outside 🙂
When will I be added to the email list?
Us officers try to add you guys as soon as possible but sometimes we get busy. In general you will be added within a week of signing up.
What kind of trips do you do?
Anything and everything from casual hiking to beginner-backpacking to cross-country skiing to mushroom foraging. If there’s something you want to do just email the list!
when are officer-led trips/where can i see the officer-led trips for this month?
Officer led trips (as of Fall 2021) are happening pretty much every weekend! Although we would love to have a semester calendar out for everyone, it is very challenging to plan one trip in advance, let alone 12 a semester! We do our best to announce the time and date sign ups come out for a particular trip during Wednesday meetings. Come to a meeting to get more details!
How do I sign up for an officer-led trip?
All sign-ups are posted on the email listserv! You will have access to the email listserv after we manually add you at most a week after you sign up.
The sign ups close too quickly! What can I do about it?
Unfortunately, CHAOS officers are students as well and are limited in their ability to plan an unlimited amount of trips for people to go on. We are doing as much as we can with our current staff to ensure that members are provided with awesome experiences, and the reality is that officer led trips are very popular (we have over 2500 people on the email list serv, so the sign up form will inevitabily close quickly when there are only ~30 spots per trip)! If you want to help plan more trips, talk to an officer to join our team.
How can I have fun if i can't seem to sign up for an officer-led trip?
There are so many ways to get involved! Officer trips are such a small portion of what CHAOS is all about. The email listserv gives you access to thousands of people who are interested in going outside. Please take advantage of this resource to plan trips, find hiking buddies, and more!
*CHAOS discord will be rolling out soon to host a lot of social activity so stay tuned*
My friend wants to attend an officer-led trip, but is not a chaos member! What do I do?
CHAOS trips are meant to be for CHAOS members. We want to create a community of people enthusiastic about the outdoors, and your friend is more than welcome to become a CHAOS member! Anyone can become a member (not limited to Berkeley students!). It’s easy and quick. You can do so here.
CAN I RESERVE GEAR?
Gear is on a first-come-first-serve basis, so you may not reserve gear. You can text the current gear officer to confirm with them what gear is available.
DISCLAIMER: We have the right to reserve gear only for CHAOS-official trips (i.e. large trips posted to the email list, led by CHAOS officers, and occur every semester as a club tradition… Like GOURMET TRIP!)
Where is the Gearshed?
To find the gear shed:
1. Find the big, white staircase on the exterior of the west side of Hearst Gymnasium (roughly halfway between the Barrows Hall tunnel and the steps that lead down to Bancroft Way)
2. Take a right through the door before going up the stairs. Go into the hallway.
3. Continue past the large, open area and take a left into room 16.
4. Find cage 24
what if i don't have a checkbook?
CHAOS accepts credit and debit cards! Please do not bring cash.
What if I want to use my gear for more than one week?
This is possible, but it is dependent on the amount of gear you have and how much longer you will need to be extending it. Please talk to a gear officer about these circumstances.
I am/have returned my gear on time except for some items which i would like to use for longer. is this allowed?
Yes, but it depends on how much gear you are using and how much longer you will be using it for. Please talk to a gear officer about your circumstances.
i would like to rent gear for "x" number of friends, including myself. how much gear can i rent under my name?
Any member can rent enough gear for themselves + one other friend.
1 member = up to 1 two/three-person tent, 2 sleeping bags + pads, 1 stove, 1-2 bear cans, etc.
2 members = up to 1 four-person tent, 4 sleeping bags + pads, 2 stoves, 2-3 bear cans, etc.
WHAT IF I DON'T HAVE A CAL ID OR DRIVER'S LICENSE?
Please bring some sort of identification – some college ID, work ID, California ID, etc.
When I first checked out gear I thought I could return it on time but due to unforseen circumstances, I don't think I will be able to. Will I be charged the late fee?
Yes. But you should email the officers as early as possible and let them know the situation and they may be merciful. Try to get a friend to return the gear in your place though.
I'm renting out gear under my name, but won't be able to return it on time. Can my friend return it for me?
Yes, and if you know this will be the case in advance, we ask that you provide the contact info of the friend on your gear rental form.
I'm unable to attend any of the gear hours listed before my trip begins. Is it possible to rent any gear?
Maybe. But please get in contact with our officers to see if anyone can accommodate you at an off-schedule time.
Please be mindful that the officers are all busy students as well, and scheduling an extra gear hour is not our priority.
I showed up to a gear hour and nobody was there...?
Sorry for the inconvenience! We usually send an email out to the email list to inform everyone about our cancelled gear hour. You will not be charged with late gear due to being ghosted by an officer.
If you want to be safe, you can always text the gear officer to confirm with them that they will be there.
how can I donate/sell gear to the club?
OF COURSE! Get in touch with the officers!
In general, we gladly accept donations rather than buying your used gear (unless you are willing to sell it for cheap).