Alpengirl COVID-19 Information
Published June 1, 2021 and is subject to change. Changes before and during the summer camp season will be published on this Alpengirl Camp COVID-19 web page. (IMPORTANT - Parents are responsible for checking for changes on this COVID-19 web page prior to camp arrival.)
COVID-19 & Summer 2021
We’re preparing to welcome your Alpengirl to camp this summer!
In order to create a camp environment that allows us to operate during the pandemic we have enhanced some of our normal practices and added new policies. Be aware that not everything at camp this summer will be exactly the same as in years past; we appreciate your understanding, trust and flexibility during summer 2021.
About This COVID-19 Web Page
We hope this COVID-19 web page will help you and your camper prepare for camp and assist you in gaining a better understanding what camp may be like this summer during the ongoing pandemic. The practices and policies outlined on this web page will be in place during summer 2021 and are based on the most recent recommendations.
PLEASE NOTE: Our practices and policies may change. If they do, we’ll update the information listed on this web page to adapt to current conditions. Please return to this page to check for updates prior to your camper’s arrival day.
Before You Register
- Read This COVID-19 Web Page
- Read All Registration Forms (Forms on Register page, step #3)
- Ask Questions
In addition, we highly suggest taking these steps before you register:
- Consult With Your Medical Provider. If a camper is at increased risk for complications related to COVID-19, we strongly recommend that you consult with your medical provider to assess your campers' risk to consider whether Alpengirl programs are appropriate for your camper at this time. See CDC resources discussing those at increased risk here.
- Understand Your Medical Insurance. All campers must have medical insurance. Note: Your personal medical insurance may not cover your camper’s medical expenses. Review your medical insurance to determine if coverage is appropriate, or if a supplemental medical policy may be necessary.
- Consider Trip and/or Travel Insurance. We highly recommend that parents consider purchasing trip and/or travel insurance from a third party vendor to cover some of the costs and/or losses incurred as a result of trip delay, cancellation, interruption, or early termination. This may include coverage for paid camp tuition or other fees, medical treatment or evacuation, or costs incurred from cancelled flights, lost baggage or other costs. The terms and conditions of coverage vary according to the insurance vendor.
- Create Travel Plans. Review the Alpengirl Travel Information web page and make travel plans and back-up travel plans. Back-up travel plans are more important for summer 2021 due to the uncertainty presented by the pandemic. For example, an airline could change its flight schedule at the last minute, or a camper may need to return home early from camp, leaving you scrambling for a last-minute flight at a higher price. It’s a GREAT year to opt to drive to and from camp, or to select a camp session with friends/family within driving distance of the camp location.
Before Camp Starts
- In the 14 days prior to camp arrival, campers will reduce risks of exposure to the virus that causes COVID-19 by following the current CDC guidelines on how to protect yourself and others and camp parents will monitor their camper for COVID-19 symptoms DAILY and seek medical attention as necessary.
- IMPORTANT: COVID-19 symptoms can overlap with symptoms of seasonal allergies or asthma and the presence of these shared symptoms may prompt quarantine and testing before or during camp. Therefore, we strongly recommend that campers with known allergies or asthma use preventative medications prior to camp arrival and during camp.
- Campers should not arrive to camp with COVID-19 symptoms. If this is the case, the camper is required to arrive with official documentation from their health care provider confirming the health condition and that the camper is cleared to attend camp.
- All campers must do one of the following before camp arrival: 1) be fully vaccinated, OR 2) receive a negative PCR molecular test result (not an antigen test result) administered within 72 hours of camp arrival. Make a plan now on how to schedule a PCR test in the 72 hours (about 3 days) prior to camp arrival. In-home PCR testing options: Vault (requires you to mail in test for results, best to check in directly with Vault on your timing if you are choosing this option) or Lucira (this option doesn't require you to mail in a test.) Campers are considered fully vaccinated for COVID-19 ≥2 weeks after they have received the second dose in a 2-dose series (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna), or ≥2 weeks after they have received a single-dose vaccine (Johnson and Johnson (J&J)/Janssen ). Proof of vaccination or PCR test result is REQUIRED upon camp arrival.
- Non-vaccinated campers that have had a positive test in the 90 days prior to camp arrival and that have met the criteria to end isolation, are not required to take a PCR test, but are required to provide documentation of the positive test results and a letter from their healthcare provider that states the camper is cleared to end isolation and are cleared for camp. The positive test result and letter together are referred to as “documentation of recovery.”
- Non-vaccinated campers who have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 within 10 days of camp arrival should not travel to camp.
- Vaccinated campers who have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 within 10 days of camp arrival may travel to camp with proof of vaccination as long as they have no symptoms.
- While traveling to camp, campers should follow CDC travel guidance and will continue to reduce risks of exposure to the virus that causes COVID-19 by frequent hand washing, avoiding touching eyes, nose and mouth, maintaining a 6 ft distance between self and others, wearing a mask when in public (and if carpooling), carrying and using hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes to clean surfaces, covering coughs and sneezes, and avoiding dine-in restaurants.
Notify & Stay At Home Guidelines
Parents must notify us if their camper’s health status changes after submission of a camper’s health forms and before arrival to camp (see Camper Health Form Agreements).
Read additional Alpengirl Stay At Home Guidelines.
Upon Camp Arrival
- Upon camp arrival, all campers and camp parents/guardians (and family members) are asked to wear a mask and maintain a 6 ft distance between themselves and others. Please attempt to reduce the number of people accompanying your camper.
- As soon as a camper arrives, and before the camper is allowed to participate at camp, each camper must pass a COVID-19 specific health screening with an Alpenguide. A parent/guardian arriving with a camper is asked to stay on site until the camper has passed this health screening and been accepted for camp participation. Campers arriving without a parent that do not pass the COVID-19 specific health screening will remain separated from the group and parents will be contacted for pick-up within 24 hours (see Registration Terms and Conditions: NON OR LATE ARRIVAL OR EARLY DEPARTURE).
- The COVID-19 specific health screening on arrival will include collection and verification of a negative PCR molecular test result (or proof of vaccination) and screening questions that include asking questions about how campers are feeling and recent contact with anyone who is known or suspected to have COVID-19, checking for symptoms, and taking temperatures. Once a camper passes the COVID-19 specific health screening, they are approved to join our cohort.
During The Adventure
Welcome to Camp!
In order to minimize the spread of communicable disease and exposure to COVID-19 at camp, we have enhanced our health, hygiene and wellness practices based on guidance from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the American Camp Association (ACA), the Association of Camp Nursing (ACN), and relevant US government agencies (federal, state, and county level).
Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions (NPIs) are community mitigation strategies. They are actions, apart from getting vaccinated and taking medicine, that individuals and groups can take to help slow the spread of illnesses like pandemic influenza (flu) and coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19). NPIs are among the best ways of controlling the transmission of pandemic flu or COVID-19 when not everyone is vaccinated.
Alpengirl will have the following NPIs in place at camp for summer 2021:
- Health Screening. We’ll have processes in place for health screening checks upon camper arrival and check-in and throughout our days together at camp. These health checks include asking questions about how campers are feeling and recent contact with anyone who is known or suspected to have COVID-19, checking for symptoms, and taking temperatures.
- Testing. Campers may be tested for COVID-19 upon arrival at camp and during camp.
- Face Masks. Campers will bring their own cloth face masks to camp (see website Packing Lists), and we will wash and dry them in rotation throughout camp as they are needed and used. There will be times when masks will be required for all campers and staff, such as when driving in the van together, when interacting with groups or people outside of our own cohort (for example, when we are with outfitters or when in campground restrooms), if someone in the group is showing signs or symptoms of illness, when cooking or serving food, or anytime or location where it is appropriate to conditions presented during camp (at staff’s sole discretion). Campers will wear masks properly when required.
- Hand Hygiene. We will increase frequency and staff monitoring of hand washing for 20 seconds with soap and water and use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers. Staff will also teach and monitor proper cough and sneeze etiquette to prevent the sharing of germs during camp.
- Cohorting. Our camp group cohort will not exceed 16 people.
- Sanitizing. We’ll increase our disinfecting routines and regularly sanitize touchable surfaces such as shared group gear, van door handles, etc. Campers will not share personal objects (water bottles, personal gear, chap stick, etc.) and any shared items will be cleaned and disinfected between uses.
- Transportation. We will be wearing masks when in camp vehicles and we may keep the windows open while driving to increase ventilation. (Consequently, it may be harder to hear and the frequency of stops for Road-side-dance parties will have to increase:)
- Sleeping Arrangements. Campers will sleep arranged head-to-toe, and on some trips we may reduce the number of campers in a tent to allow 6 feet of space between campers heads at night. We'll leave the rain fly off if weather is good, or if the fly must remain on, we’ll increase ventilation by leaving windows open in order to maintain good air flow through the tent at night. Our normal tent mate rotations half way through camp may or may not happen (at Alpenguides’ discretion). We'll also encourage sleeping out under the stars on tarps when and where appropriate - a starry night slumber party!
- Physical Distancing. There will be times when physical distancing will be required, such as when campers first arrive to camp before everyone is checked-in, or if someone in our group is showing signs or symptoms of illness, or anytime it is appropriate to conditions presented during camp (at staff’s sole discretion).
- Cooking/Meals. As appropriate to conditions presented during camp and at staff’s sole discretion, cooking and meal presentation may be done by the staff without camper involvement. This would be a major divergence from our normal camp routine: usually camper cook groups participate in cooking and the Leader of the Day presents meals. We hope to keep that system in place for summer 2021, but we cannot guarantee it. Don’t worry, whatever happens, you’ll still get to wash your own dish kit ;)
IMPORTANT: For our NPIs to be effective, we need commitment and diligence from everyone in our group. Campers who, in our judgement, do not comply with these expectations may be dismissed from camp.
After The Adventure
Camp parents are required to report to Alpengirl if their camper shows signs or symptoms of COVID-19, or tests positive for COVID-19 within two weeks of leaving camp.
What happens if Alpengirl cancels a trip because of COVID-19? This is addressed in the COVID-19 EXCEPTION TO ALPENGIRL STANDARD PROVISION ABOVE section of the Terms of Registration:If Alpengirl must cancel your trip before it starts because of COVID-19, Alpengirl will provide you a full refund of payments you have made, less the non-refundable $600 deposit and credit/debit card processing fees.
What happens if my camper can’t join camp because of COVID-19? This is addressed in the NON OR LATE ARRIVAL OR EARLY DEPARTURE section of the Registration Terms: Alpengirl will not refund or reduce tuition if, for any reason (whether voluntary or involuntary), a camper does not attend, arrives late or leaves the program in progress (including but not limited to voluntary withdrawal, dismissal from the program, illness, injury or any other reason).
How can I protect my camp investment? This is addressed in the INSURANCE section of the Registration Terms: We highly recommend that parents consider purchasing trip and/or travel insurance to cover some of the costs and/or losses incurred as a result of trip or travel delay, cancellation, interruption or early termination. This may include coverage for paid program tuition or other fees, medical treatment or evacuation, or costs incurred from cancelled flights, lost baggage or other costs. The terms and conditions of coverage vary according to the insurance provider. Direct all questions regarding coverage to the insurance provider (whether for medical insurance or trip, travel and/or tuition protection insurance). A few questions to ask insurance providers: 1) Will a cancel for any reason (CFAR) or a standard policy cover cancellation due to "fear of travel"? 2) Will CFAR or a standard policy cover cancellation due to positive COVID test or exposure to someone who's sick or tested positive before camp starts? 3) Will CFAR or a standard policy cover cancellation if a camp cancels the trip?
Will my camper get COVID-19 at camp? We cannot guarantee camper safety or a COVID-19-free environment at Alpengirl. It is a risk for everyone, and like other risks at camp, it can not be completely eliminated. Our endeavor is to manage the risks associated with our camp, including the risks of COVID-19, as best we can. Campers and parents are critical partners in this effort: please read Responsible Together: Alpengirl in COVID-19 – Our Disclosure and Camper/Parent Commitment.
What if my camper develops symptoms of COVID-19 during camp? Symptomatic campers will be isolated from the group - in a tent or other location separate from others. Camp staff will provide care, follow COVID-19 illness guidelines, and seek outside medical advice - which may include evacuation from the trip for medical evaluation and testing. If evacuated, course remoteness, short duration of trip and logistics make it unlikely (and not guaranteed) that your camper will be able to re-join the group. There is no base camp or facility available to care for campers that are not able stay on their trip. There is more about this in the 24 HOUR PICK-UP NOTICE section of the Registration Terms.
What precautions are in place for camp staff? Alpengirl camp staff are vaccinated and will follow the same procedures and policies as campers regarding COVID-19, and will teach and model them for campers. At staff training, thorough review of all health, hygiene and wellness practices will prepare our staff to teach and monitor campers throughout the summer. Staff will continue to perform daily health check-ins throughout the summer. Staff will be following guidelines to limit exposure during days off, and will be aware of sick-leave and other employment policies.