Photos of the Week: Trimester 1 Recap

The last few months were pretty busy for our students! Now they’re home for a few weeks to rest and recover before jetting off to Southeast Asia in January. With so many skills and adventures, you might have already forgotten what they accomplished during their fir. While you can always look back at our past Photos of the Week to remind yourself, we also have some pictures that were previously unpublished to share. Take a look to see the beach adventures, the tree climbing, the rainforest explorations, the scuba diving, the business building, the urban innovation, the homestays, and more.

winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Ashley basking in the sunlight
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Crawly critters | Photo By: Ashley Zhao
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
You’re never too old to play in the sand
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Costa Rican sunsets never get old | Photo By: Hannah Wareham
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Scuba selfies!
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Getting serious at business bootcamp | Photo By: Liam McIlwain
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Revamping a Panamanian community | Photo By: Whitfield Smith
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Time to climb | Photo By: Aimee Diederich
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Eli practicing scuba skills | Photo By: Micah Zimmerman
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
The skies are pretty at all times of day | Photo By: Hannah Wareham
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Jack on the open seas
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Everything’s better out on the ocean
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Lauren and Emmie hanging out at Rancho Mastatal | Photo By: Whitfield Smith
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Leon, Pablo, Eli, and James at Rancho Mastatal | Photo By: Whitfield Smith
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Upcycling for Monteverde ISP | Photo By: Lauren Allen
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
So many fabric choices for upcycling! | Photo By: Lauren Allen
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Learning to use a sewing machine | Photo By: Lauren Allen
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Lauren with her host family
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Reach for the sky | Photo By: Whitfield Smith
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
The rainforest is beyond beautiful | Photo By: Emma Macfayden
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Dogs make the best adventure buddies | Photo By: Emma Macfayden
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
In the rainforest, you see such unique species | Photo By: Emma Macfayden
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Taking in the view with a friend | Photo By: Emma Macfayden
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Sunset strikes again | Photo By: Sherly Budiman
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Learning about sustainability at Rancho Mastatal | Photo By: Whitfield Smith
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Squad 3 exploring the rainforest | Photo By: Whitfield Smith
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Getting dirty | Photo By: Whitfield Smith
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Josh and his field advisors, Jamie and Felipe
winterline, gap year, costa rica, panama
Squad 1 in Costa Rica

If you’re interested in living this journey for yourself, apply now for our 2020-2021 gap year. Want the experience, but unable to dedicate a whole year for travel? Then join our Latin America semester this fall! It’s never too early to start thinking about your future.

An Interview at Rancho Mastatal

While he and his squad were learning about sustainability at Rancho Mastatal, our student Liam took some time to interview staff member Ryan Roberts. Liam learned all about Ryan: what brought him to Rancho Mastatal, what it’s like to live on the ranch, and how he intends to use what he’s learned in the future when he eventually leaves the ranch.

Watch the interview to find out what life is like in rural Costa Rica, and if you’re interested in visiting for yourself, you’re in luck – in 2020, students on both of our gap year itineraries and our Latin America semester program will be spending time at Rancho Mastatal. Apply today to be one of these students!

Photos of the Week 11/22

We’re very sad to say that Trimester 1 is just about over! Tomorrow, November 23rd, our students will travel back to their homes for winter break to recharge for the next two trimesters. Students who came in as strangers are now family, and it’ll be hard to say goodbye for the next few weeks. But they’ve certainly had an incredible time in Costa Rica and Panama for the past few months, and it won’t be long until they’re reuniting to jet off to Asia!

Take a look at the last photos from Trimester 1 and try not to miss us too much while our students are at home. Don’t worry: you can always look back at our past Photos of the Week to get your fix, and we might even have a special Trimester 1 recap blog coming up soon…

winterline, gap year, costa rica
Alyssa and Veronica used some free time to go bungee jumping!
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Lydia, Spencer, and Darshil take a selfie before scuba diving
winterline, gap year, costa rica
James and Josh ready to hit the ocean
winterline, gap year, costa rica
The boys of Squad 1
winterline, gap year, costa rica
A fishing-day selfie
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Squad 1: scuba certified!
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Darshil and Field Advisor Felipe are all thumbs-up
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Squad 1 enjoying the beach
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Silhouettes in the Costa Rican sunset | Photo By: Hannah Wareham
winterline, gap year, costa rica
These sunsets never get old | Photo By: Hannah Wareham
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Squad 1 had the rare opportunity to see sea turtles hatch! | Photo By: Felipe Buitrago
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Tiny turtles | Photo By: Felipe Buitrago
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Off to the water they go | Photo By: Felipe Buitrago
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Emmie at La Iguana Chocolate Factory | Photo By: Alexandra Johansson
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Frijoles Locos’ surf van embodies the Costa Rica vibe | Photo By: Hannah Wareham
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Caught monkeyin’ around | Photo By: Pablo Gonzalez-Pacheco
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Handmade pizza | Photo By: Veronica Allmon
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Important Costa Rica language lesson | Photo By: Micah Zimmerman
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Handmade soap from Rancho Mastatal | Photo By: Jamie Hackbarth
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Under the sea | Photo By: Jack Li
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Squad 1 hanging out | Photo By: Jack Li
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Squad 1 spent their week on the water
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Squad 1 getting ready for ocean safety lessons
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Diving practice in the pool | Photo By: partner organization Pacific Coast Dive Center
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Squad 1 in the pool | Photo By: partner organization Pacific Coast Dive Center
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Field Advisors get scuba certified, too! | Photo By: Jamie Hackbarth
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Just chillin’ underwater
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Baby turtles huddled together | Photo By: Hannah Wareham
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Squad 1 grabbing their boards | Photo By: Jamie Hackbarth
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Veronica rolling her pizza dough

If you’re interested in living this journey for yourself, apply now for our 2020-2021 gap year. It’s never too early to start thinking about your future. And if you apply between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, you’ll automatically save $1,000 on your tuition!

Photos of the Week 11/15

We’re back with your weekly fix of our student photos, and some added critters and creatures in the mix! There’s still plenty to see from our students in Costa Rica: more photos from Monteverde ISPs, more sustainable fishing with ConnectOcean, and more sustainability education at Rancho Mastatal. Even though all three squads work with the same partners and learn the same skills, their experiences are entirely individual.

You know what that means: you can’t really understand the Winterline experience until you have it yourself!

winterline, gap year, costa rica
Alexandra sewing for her Monteverde ISP
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Alexandra measuring out fabric to sew
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Homestay mother/sewing teacher following a pattern | Photo By: Alexandra Johansson
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Alexandra cutting her fabric
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Alexandra with her homestay parents
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Making ceviche with freshly caught fish! | Photo By: Jamie Hackbarth
winterline, gap year, costa rica
The finished ceviche dish | Photo By: Jamie Hackbarth
winterline, gap year, costa rica
A lizard lit up! | Photo By: Hannah Wareham
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Animals don’t have to have fur to be cute | Photo By: Lydia Miller
winterline, gap year, costa rica
A beautiful Monteverde landscape | Photo By: Liam McIlwain
winterline, gap year, costa rica
The Monteverde landscape never gets old | Photo By: Liam McIlwain
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Alyssa taking in the beauty of the Monteverde Cloud Forest
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Alyssa’s ready to hit the waves
winterline, gap year, costa rica
A sloth just hanging around | Photo By: Lucas Massolo
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Squad 1 at Rancho Mastatal
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Cooking at Rancho Mastatal | Photo By: Darshil Dholakia
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Felipe at Rancho Mastatal | Photo By: Darshil Dholakia
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Jack at Rancho Mastatal | Photo By: Darshil Dholakia
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Squad 1 selfie!
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Waterfall hikes with Squad 1
winterline, gap year, costa rica
The beauty of Rancho Mastatal | Photo By: Darshil Dholakia
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Squad 1 getting dirty | Photo By: partner organization Rancho Mastatal
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Squad 2 group photo

If you’re interested in living this journey for yourself, apply now for our 2020-2021 gap year. It’s never too early to start thinking about your future!

Photos of the Week 11/8

Our three squads are back in Costa Rica, and if you can believe it, there’s only two weeks left of Trimester 1! We’re happy to say that our students are still having an amazing time in Central America. This week, Squad 3 is off on their Monteverde ISPs, learning skills like recycled paper-making and neotropical bird monitoring. Squad 2 has been in the water, learning ocean safety with ConnectOcean and getting scuba certified with Pacific Coast Dive Center. Finally, Squad 1 is enjoying some time off the grid at Rancho Mastatal, so stay tuned for their photos when they resurface on WiFi next week!

Which Costa Rican partner would you most like to work with and learn from on a Winterline gap year? It’s hard to choose: as you can tell from the photos below, they’re all an amazing experience!

winterline, gap year, costa rica
Alyssa on the water
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Alyssa practicing her photography skills | Photo By: Veronica Allmon
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Learning ocean safety with ConnectOcean
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Interacting with ocean species | Photo By: Lucas Massolo
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Ocean views | Photo By: Liam McIlwain
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Avian friends | Photo By: Liam McIlwain
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Beautiful birds | Photo By: Sherly Budiman
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Learning about neotropical bird species | Photo By: Sherly Budiman
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Making recycled paper for Monteverde ISP | Photo By: Emma Macfayden
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Making recycled paper for Monteverde ISP | Photo By: Emma Macfayden
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Making recycled paper for Monteverde ISP | Photo By: Emma Macfayden
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Squad 2 hit the seas | Photo By: partner organization Pacific Coast Dive Center
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Checking out the ocean view | Photo By: partner organization Pacific Coast Dive Center
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Creative expression | Photo By: Emma Macfayden
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Veronica with her catch
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Christian and Jackson suited up for ocean safety | Photo By: Veronica Allmon
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Winterline takes on Baywatch | Photo By: Veronica Allmon
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Hit the water! | Photo By: Veronica Allmon
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Taking ocean safety lessons seriously | Photo By: Veronica Allmon
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Lifeguarding skills under way | Photo By: Veronica Allmon
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Lydia, Peyton, and Andrea learning natural building | Photo By: partner organization Rancho Mastatal
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Darshil and Jack working with bamboo | Photo By: partner organization Rancho Mastatal
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Zarah and Andrea using natural building tools | Photo By: partner organization Rancho Mastatal
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Peyton and Lydia chop bamboo | Photo By: partner organization Rancho Mastatal
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Alyssa hanging out on the beach
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Rainbow + sunset = heavenly views | Photo By: Lauren Speroni
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Jason enjoying a boat ride
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Did someone say “Titanic”? | Photo By: Jason Thomas
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Prepping for the open water | Photo By: partner organization Pacific Coast Dive Center
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Jason suited up for scuba
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Exploring underwater | Photo By: partner organization Pacific Coast Dive Center
winterline, gap year, costa rica
All good underwater | Photo By: Nik Blushi
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Views above water aren’t bad, either | Photo By: Nik Blushi
winterline, gap year, costa rica
Getting certified | Photo By: partner organization Pacific Coast Dive Center
winterline, gap year, costa rica
You don’t need words to communicate underwater | Photo By: partner organization Pacific Coast Dive Center
winterline, gap year, costa rica
An incredible sunset to finish off the day | Photo By: Jason Thomas

If you’re interested in living this journey for yourself, apply now for our 2020-2021 gap year. It’s never too early to start thinking about your future!

Location Spotlight: Rancho Mastatal

Last year, we gave you a look into our Costa Rican partner Rancho Mastatal, but we thought it was time for an update! 

At Rancho Mastatal, our students learn about permaculture and immerse themselves in a community that cares deeply about environmental sustainability. By doing so, students learn how to live in balance with the environment, making the most of what nature provides us without causing harm to our ecosystem. This includes cultivating natural building and food production skills, as well as learning about soil ecology and fertility.

Rancho Mastatal takes pride in their focus on natural building, which emphasizes the use of local labor and resources. These materials include wood, sourced from the region and sometimes directly from their property, earth, straw and natural grasses, bamboo, stone and rock, and manure. All of these resources are found in abundance and are not just strong, but renewable and sustainable. Students also get to learn the proper techniques to use each of these materials, which they put to test by building on their own!

Working with wood | Photo By: Maria O’Neal
winterline, global skills, gap year
Working with wood | Photo By: Maria O’Neal
winterline, global skills, gap year
Building at Rancho Mastatal | Photo By: Maria O’Neal

Another main focus at Rancho Mastatal is hand preparing meals from whole foods that are locally or regionally sourced. For many students, this is a far cry from the processed and prepackaged foods that are so prominent in America. At Rancho Mastatal, students develop an appreciation for every step of the food preparation process, from gathering ingredients all the way to eating the final product. For example, our students get to make and enjoy their very own chocolate!

winterline, global skills, gap year
Yeukai showing off her handmade chocolate | Photo By: Emma Mays
winterline, global skills, gap year
Paris squeezing limes | Photo By: Emma Mays
winterline, global skills, gap year
Grinding beans | Photo By: Emma Mays
winterline, global skills, gap year
Starting the food prep | Photo By: Emma Mays
winterline, global skills, gap year
Chocolate time! | Photo By: Emma Mays

Finally, students get a lesson in permaculture, which is the practice of sustainable land use design. This involves planting in patterns that occur naturally to maximize efficiency and minimize labor and waste. Permaculture allows us to reach the desired level of harmony between man and nature, making it a win-win situation for all sides!

winterline, global skills, gap year
Planting at Rancho Mastatal | Photo By: Emma Mays
Winterline, global skills, gap year
Planting at Rancho Mastatal | Photo By: Maria O’Neal
winterline, global skills, gap year
Planting at Rancho Mastatal | Photo By: Maria O’Neal

Interested in learning more about Rancho Mastatal? Check out their website or join us when we head back next year for the 2019-2020 gap year!