Trail Conference COVID-19 Protocols

Trail Conference COVID-19 Protocols

Latest update:  February 2023

If you are volunteering or participating in a Trail Conference event you must follow our COVID-19 protocols detailed below. Appalachian Trail volunteers must follow additional guidelines, also described below. If you have questions, please email [email protected].

Follow Park Masking Policies: A high-quality face mask can help protect you and others from COVID-19 and other communicable diseases. County and park requirements may vary depending on county transmission rates, and we recommend checking this information before signing up for an event. To find your park's latest mask policy check their website or call them.

Don’t Share Eyewear: Risk of infection from a surface is low, however there is still a small amount of risk. Protective eyewear should not be transferred between participants during the day. At the end of the day, disinfect any eyewear that may be worn by others in future worktrips to the best of your ability.

Trip/Group Leaders: Always check the mask policy of the park you will be working in and, if masks are required, notify your participants in advance and at the beginning of the day.

Optional PPE funded by the Trail Conference (if you are a trip leader seeking this PPE, please email [email protected]):

Disinfectant for hands/people (i.e., hand sanitizer)

Spare masks in case of any last-minute park or county changes that require mask usage by volunteers

Testing Positive: If you test positive for COVID-19 within 10 days of attending a group outing please alert [email protected] (your identity will be kept confidential). In the case that somebody from a group trip tests positive, for safety reasons, the group with an infected member will be advised to follow current health guidelines regarding quarantine.


A.T. Volunteers

The Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) has additional guidance that only applies to volunteers on the Appalachian Trail. A.T. volunteers are responsible for adhering to all Trail Conference protocols as well as ATC's.

Full Appalachian Trail Volunteer Protocols are located at the link below. All A.T. volunteers must complete their online acknowledgement form. This includes watching a 16-minute video, reviewing the JHA (Job Hazard Analysis) document, and then submitting the Re-Engagement Acknowledgement form on the webpage. Each volunteer should allocate 30 minutes to complete this review and acknowledgement.

Disclaimer Regarding COVID-19 for Outdoor Group Outings

The New York-New Jersey Trail Conference has implemented safety protocols for all group volunteer outings. You must follow all protocols while participating in volunteer activities.

An inherent risk of exposure to COVID-19 exists in any public place where people are present. While enjoying outdoor spaces, please continue to follow the CDC, NJ, and NYS DOH's guidelines for preventing the spread of colds, flu, and COVID-19:

Stay home if you are sick, or showing or feeling any COVID-19 symptoms, such as fever, coughing, and/or troubled breathing;

Unvaccinated volunteers or participants should wear a mask when you cannot maintain social distancing and;

Wash hands often or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol when soap and water are not available.

By participating in a group outing you:

Acknowledge the existence of the COVID-19 virus and voluntarily assume all risks related to exposure to COVID-19.

Agree that the New York-New Jersey Trail Conference and its staff and volunteers will not be liable to you as a result of the COVID-19 virus causing injury, illness or other damages arising from the attendance at a group outing.