Trip Region: Central America
Partners Trek? No
Trip Cost: $1560
Airfare Estimate: $700
Nightlife: 4 • Activity: 3
I’m sure a lot of people told you about all the crazy, fun, stupid adventures you’d have while in business school – come with us, and we’ll make sure you knock ’em out before you set foot in your first recruiting event. Here at Rick’s-aragua, we’ll do our namesake bar proud and make sure your adventurous spirit (and your liver) are ready for the next 2 years. This trip is the perfect mix of neon-colored good times, outdoor adventure (on volcanoes and waterfalls) and beach recuperation. We all speak Spanish, but only when intoxicated, so one way or another this should be quite the adventure.
Day 1 — Friday, Aug 28
Fly from Ann Arbor to Managua, Bus to Leon - Meet your fellow Trekkers at the airport bar, indulge on some overpriced margaritas and hop on the plane to Managua! Your (fearless) leaders will meet you in Managua, where we will immediately board a bus to Leon. We’ll check into our hotel, clear out the mini-bar and prepare for a lovely dinner and rage-tastic night on the town. No better way to get to know your fellow “future business leaders” than drunk on the dance floor.
Day 2 — Saturday, Aug 29
Rum plantation and We’re on a Boat, Part 1 - We’ll begin the day with a tour of a rum factory and plantation (sampling encouraged). After seeing how our new favorite beverage is made, we’ll take the first of our many excursions into Nicaragua’s extraordinary outdoors. The Juan Venado Wildlife Reserve is home to some of Nicaragua's most exotic animal species and beautiful nature scenes - all of which we will enjoy from the comfort of a spacious boat. Having taken in the natural sights, we’ll return to Leon and enjoy dinner and drinks amidst this fine colonial treasure.
Day 3 — Sunday, Aug 30
Hike Up and Board Down an Active Volcano - Today marks the peak of our outdoorsing experience and general badassery. We’ll take the bus to Cerro Negro Volcano and begin a moderately difficult hike (done at the pace of a hungover, out-of-shape MBA). The hike culminates an exceptional view of the surrounding countryside and the ability to brag to our future section mates about having actually climbed an active volcano. But never ones to rest on our laurels, we’ll outdo ourselves by “ash boarding” (think snowboarding on ash) down the mountain. We’ll celebrate these achievements with dinner on the town, a night at the bar(s) and a beautiful sunset with your new BFFs.
Day 4 — Monday, Aug 31
La Playa y La Salsa - We bid goodbye to our fair host city of Leon and make our way to San Juan Del Sur - a beach town known for its dramatic natural landscape and aggressive rage scene. Because bus rides make us hungry, we’ll stop along the way to sample the local cuisine and beverages. After checking into our beachside accommodations, we’ll be ready to enjoy our new home for the next four nights. To make sure we maintain our beach bods, we’ll shake it off at salsa lessons. Next stop, we’ll salsa our way to the many nightclubs in the area before returning back to our casa for some late night pool rage.
Day 5 — Tuesday, Sep 01
Rappelling down a cliff, drinking on a beach - Remember that dramatic natural landscape we told you about? Well, after spending a day staring up at impressive cliffs, no doubt our curiosity will get the best of us - and we’ll have to rappel down one. This excursion will take us via bus to Playa Gigante to rappel down a waterfall. Since the MTrek board would kill us if we were not very sober for this activity, we’ll likely want to very much reverse that afterward. So back to the villa for some poolside and/or beachside cocktails before we all suit up for NEON NIGHT. Tonight's the night where you'll have the chance to party like you are at the real Rick's back in Ann Arbor: covered in enough neon to pretend you're back in undergrad. So bring your favorite rage tank, or borrow one of Joe's several (hundred).
Day 6 — Wednesday, Sep 02
Free Day and…? San Juan Del Sur has a lot of great things to do. We can sleep off our hangovers on the beach, or get started on new ones. We can take in the local surf, or we can take in the local shopping. Or, we can hang out at our awesome hotel pool. We wanted you to have this day for “you to do you” and play it by ear. For the evening, we’re planning a little surprise that we think you’ll enjoy (but may not remember). Just trust us that it’ll be quite the night!
Day 7 — Thursday, Sep 03
We’re on a Boat, Part 2 - We will take the morning and afternoon to sleep it off, find any trekkers that we lost somewhere amongst the previous night's festivities (just kidding, Mtrek Board!) and sun away our hangovers on the beach. That evening we will be picked up by a large catamaran for a sunset cruise, complete with an open bar of local beer and rum (from our old friends at the plantation we visited on Day 1!). The boat will tour the Nicaraguan coast, giving us an amazing view of cliffs, beaches and, hopefully, some marine life. Assuming we don’t decide to ditch business school and spend the rest of our lives as drunken pirates, we will return to San Juan Del Sur for a late dinner and later raging.
Day 8 — Friday, Sep 04
Coffee plantation and ziplining through volcano jungle - After the few days we’ve had in San Juan Del Sur, no doubt we’ll all be in need of a good cup of coffee. Thankfully, some of the best coffee in the world is grown in Nicaragua and we will be heading straight to the source to get it. We’ll board a bus to Granada, stopping at a coffee plantation on the way. After touring the plantation from the ground level, we’ll see it from above as we zipline through a volcanic jungle, complete with multiple volcanos and incredible canopies. After this adventure, we’ll head to the lakefront city of Granada for dinner and a sampling of the local nightlife.
Day 9 — Saturday, Sep 05
Tours by land and sea - The AM will offer the opportunity to take a relaxed bike tour through the city of Granada. Another old colonial hotspot, Granada offers significant cultural exposure, beautiful architecture and the lovely landscapes that we will have grown accustomed to. Not satisfied with a terrestrial tour, we will board kayaks to explore the tiny isletas surrounding Granada. We will then head back for a power nap so we can finish our day - and our Mtrek - on an incredible high note. After a glorious dinner, we will leave it all out on the dance floor one last time before returning to America.
Day 10 — Sunday, Sep 06
Homecoming - We head back to Ann Arbor. I miss Nicaragua already.
Andi "Swags" Waghelstein
Andi Waghelstein, our resident MacGyver, is the ultimate world traveler of “Ricksaragua” (unless you ask Will). Game for any adventure, she quit her job and booked her around-the-world ticket the moment she got her acceptance call from Ross. This (wannabe) yogi will woo you with her wit, own you on the dance floor, and melt you with a scalp massage. Andi will amaze you with her uncanny ability to plan a rockin’ good time on a moment’s notice – her resume of extracurricular planning includes curling in Canada, impromptu tailgates and, well, most of this MTrek. Lover of lumbersexuals, Andi owns it on top of the BUS and with fellow members of the Tribe. As Trip Yenta, Andi will make sure you are well fed, plenty drunk and will teach you about how to get drunken trip leaders home safely. Just don’t call her Andrea. Signature Dance Move: Shake It Off
John "Donde" Dooley
“Donde” Dooley? John earned this nickname by going “ghost like Swayze” on a moments notice, leaving his whereabouts a continuous guessing game for all his friends. Freed from the shackles of his past life as an accountant, Dooley has been calling his own plays since arriving at Ross. While he always starts the night with the crew, at some point he follows in the spirit of his Chinese/Irish ancestors and strikes off on his own adventures (don’t worry, he always finds his way to pass out on his couch). These disappearances aren’t just limited to his social life: During his internship improving Wal-Mart’s sustainability practices, Dooley almost convinced Wal-Mart to save the world, but missed the meeting in favor of poolside drinks back at his condo. Yet his employers should not have been surprised – as a native Californian, Dooley’s propensity to “chill hard” is always front and center (legend has it his resting heart rate is the same as a sleeping child’s). So, donde Dooley? Wherever he is, it’s where you want to be. Signature Dance Move: Grinding on Joe.
Joe "Broseph" Kraut
Joe might fancy himself the “old man” of this MTrek crew, but we can assure you, the ship hasn’t sailed out on this ol’ seaman just yet. While Joe spent his pre-Ross years on a nuclear submarine for the Navy, this Excel maven has settled in nicely at Ross, balancing an appetite for number-crunching in his favorite Operations and Tax classes along with his love for 3AM Pancheros burritos and drunk Goldeneye on N64 (it’s exactly what it sounds like, except for way better). Despite his love of late night mexican and alcohol-induced video games, Joe will also serve as Team Captain of finding us pick up volleyball games to join – before absolutely dominating the competition (Go Blue!). Likely to fill the role of ‘trek dad’, iyou can count on Joe to be a responsible and fun-loving trek leader… as long as he gets his old man rest and his arthritic knees don’t flare up. Signature Dance Move: He can do it and put his back in to it
Kaitlin "Happy Feet" Paulson
Kaitlin is the trip’s resident Dr. Jekyll and Ms. Hyde. By day, her Minnesoooota roots shine through and she comes off as one of the nicer people you will ever meet. By night, however, she is all business. Once she dons her trademark maize and blue BUS gear, Kaitlin starts dancing and won’t stop until you drag her home (or, more accurately, she has to drag you home). This combo makes her the perfect rage companion: she will find the nicest, most polite way to tell you that you best keep the party going. Her Jekyll/Hyde routine continues with her school affiliations: 99% of the year, she bleeds blue, but when her alma mater Wisconsin Badgers are playing, her blood returns to its standard red (we generally avoid her on those days). Her ardor for theme parties is as strong as her love of her #1 team…she’s already earmarked her entire internship income for next year’s costumes (expect one or two of them to make an appearance in Nicaragua).
Signature Dance Move: Lady power rage
Will "Kletteris" Kletter
Little is known about William Kletter. Some say he was raised by grizzly bears, but that’s mostly when he doesn’t shave for a few months. Others claim he was born a woman. After his last drag show appearance, jury is still out. One thing we know for sure: As the baby of the trek, Will’s metabolism will propel the trek to new levels of debauchery. But he’s still the best bro at Ross and by the end of this trip you’ll feel lucky to know him. Even though he’s Ivy League educated and heiress to the Betty Crocker fortune or somethin’ like that, Will is still a man of the people. Equally at home discussing corporate social responsibility, global warming, or that smell your hair gets when you haven’t washed it in a week, he’s never at a loss unless he’s too drunk to blink. That’s when the hugs come out. And right around the time Will presses you tight against his hairy chest and understated beer belly, you’ll know Ross was the best choice you’ve ever made. Signature Dance Move: Getting low…er than you.