Updated for Summer 2021
Canada West Mountain School is committed to the safety of our participants, staff, and the public. We have been running programs with Covid-19 precautions in place since summer 2020 without interruption and are looking forward to the Summer 2021 season while keeping the same degree of safety during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
Following is a summary of the Canada West Mountain School Covid-19 Protocols for all our 2021 programs:
- All programs follow existing Federal, Provincial, Municipal, or regional health guidance.
- Instructors, Guides, and Staff on all CWMS programs are trained in current industry best practices for protecting the health and safety of everyone on our programs, as well as to continue to limit the spread of Covid-19.
- Every participant, Instructor, and Guide are required to complete a pre-trip screening questionnaire to identify and disclose any existing or prior Covid-19 symptoms; current or prior contact with Covid-19 positive persons; and, recent travel history outside of their home region (Covid-19 Screening Questionnaire).
- There is a screening discussion each morning before every program to ensure that everyone is free of Covid-19 symptoms. Anyone exhibiting symptoms (at any time during the program) will be required to remove themselves from the program.
- Anyone (participants or CWMS staff) who has Covid-19 symptoms, or has been in direct contact with another person who has tested positive for Covid-19 is asked to postpone their participation. If anyone is refused participation for these reasons a full refund will be offered. Staff will be replaced with equally qualified replacement.
- Appropriate personal hygiene (hand-washing, etc) is encouraged and facilitated by the provision of hand sanitizer on all programs.
- Some modifications we have incorporated into our programs:
- Training activities focus on maintaining physical distancing of 2 meters.
- All programs are run with a maximum group size of 10 people with 1 Guide/Instructor; most programs are run with smaller groups.
- Training sites and locations are chosen to facilitate ease of keeping participants separated, both at the training sites and while walking to/from.
- Most activities have been modified to eliminate the need for any close physical contact. However, standard safety protocols have not been sacrificed or compromised – we ensure that safety levels are maintained at the same time as physical distancing.
- In all training situations that require breaking physical distance guidelines, all CWMS Participants and Guides/Instructors are required to wear masks, face shields, or other appropriate face coverings. Participants are given options to avoid participating in activities requiring close proximity with other team members.
- Class lectures and theory sessions are held through our Canada West Mountain School Virtual Classroom where appropriate.
- Online training through our Virtual Classroom will be the first priority for all non-field theory instruction. However, some courses may be offered with optional in-person theory sessions, such as Wilderness First Aid training sessions. In this event, we utilize classrooms with ample ventilation and maintain strict protocols to ensure ample ventilation and physical distancing, wearing of masks, and proper hygiene. Canada West Mountain School follows BC Public Health Guidelines where applicable regarding our indoor classroom instruction.
- Programs requiring overnight camping have protocols in place to ensure that no shared cooking, tenting or other activities that may compromise safe distancing are required. People are welcome to share with others from their households, as per provincial health guidelines.
Please contact us directly with any questions or concerns you have, we want to hear from everyone. We continue to adapt to the ever-changing requirements that this pandemic is bringing, and are confident we can continue to safely navigate these times while still proving the training for you to safely get out and enjoy all of the hiking trails, mountains, and climbing areas that British Columbia has to offer. At the same time, we want to ensure that we do everything we can to reduce the spread of Covid-19 and keep people healthy!
Safe safe, stay healthy!