Covid-19 Mitigation for May Trips

If the situation with Covid-19 at LC or in Oregon is deemed unacceptably risky at the time of the trips, we may need to cancel.  We would do this with as much notice as possible, but please be aware that if the the situation changes rapidly we may need to cancel trips with very little notice.

It is also possible that some individual trips may be canceled due to location restrictions, particularly those that use facilities such as cabins or yurts. Individual trips could also be canceled last-minute if their trip leader(s) contract Covid-19 or have to be in quarantine, and we are unable to find replacements. If this happens, we’ll offer you a full refund or do our best to place you on another trip (whichever you prefer).

The good news is that (according to current research) the outdoors is much less risky for Covid-19 transmission, and on these trips we’ll be able to have fun and build community while spread out in the fresh air!


Covid-19 mitigation procedures

The procedures listed below apply to everyone on May Trips, including participants, leaders, and support staff.

Pre-Trip Quarantine

  • Students are asked to quarantine to the greatest extent possible for the 14 days prior to their trip.
  • Students have done a great job following Covid-19 mitigation protocols this semester, the last 2 weeks of the term is the time to double down on careful masking, distancing, and hand washing.
  • The end of the semester and finals often lead to exhaustion and cold-like symptoms. Get plenty of rest and take care of yourself — those with Covid-19 symptoms will not be able to attend their trip.


  • Students will be tested for Covid-19 at LC on Tuesday, May 4th. There is no cost to students for this test, and participating in the testing clinic, with a negative result, is mandatory for attending trips.
  • Students who develop Covid-19 symptoms during their trip will be taken to a nearby testing facility for a NAAT (nucleic acid amplification test), a confirmatory test per CDC guidelines.
    • Symptom-based testing can be charged to most health insurance plans, and is not covered by College Outdoors.
    • If the test is negative and they are well enough (and non-contagious, e.g., influenza) to rejoin the trip, they may do so.
    • If the test is positive, they will be supported into isolation for 14 days. Isolation housing is provided on-campus for students who live on campus Spring Semester 2021.  For off campus students, College Outdoors will transport them to their housing in Portland.
    • If the test is positive, all participants on their trip will also be supported into quarantine for 14 days.
  • Please be aware that a positive Covid-19 test will impact your ability to travel, and travel plans will need to be changed accordingly.


  • Students will bring their own personal masks (recommended one clean one each day, since they get dirty outdoors)
  • Students will wear masks whenever indoors, and while outdoors when it is not practical to maintain 6 ft of distance from other people
  • College Outdoors provides the student’s choice of N95 or KN95 masks to be worn when riding in vans/vehicles. The N95 masks provide a tighter seal around the face and therefore provide greater protection for yourself and others than KN95 masks. We advise consulting with your doctor to confirm if an N95 is the best option for you personally to wear. College Outdoors helps students properly fit their N95 or KN95 masks.  A new N95 or KN95 mask is provided for each day of the trip in which vehicle travel is planned to be occurring.
  • Students on the Rafting trip will be provided with a specific mask to wear while rafting. Rafting participants still need their own personal masks to wear while off the water and in camp.


  • Students who are on a trip with members of their Covid-19 “Pod” will be asked to share a tent, cabin, or yurt.  Masks do not need to be worn while sleeping in the same room as members of your pod, or inside the sleeping structure, regardless of distancing.
  • To promote inclusion among everyone on the trip, all standard masking and distancing procedures will be followed, even among pods, with the exception of inside the sleeping structure.


  • All trips, including backpacking trips, will be set up for hand washing with soap and water, as well as with alcohol based hand sanitizer.  Soap and water will be emphasized as the preferred method and will always be used when in camp.
  • Hand Sanitizer is provided for each group, and students are encouraged to also bring their own personal supply.
  • Hands should be sanitized frequently, including before entering vehicles and before touching shared equipment.
  • College Outdoors leaders are trained in sanitary food handling practices.  At least one leader on each trip has obtained a Multnomah County (Oregon) Food Handler’s card.
  • Dishes and cookware are washed and sanitized between uses.


  • Vehicles will be seated at partial capacity (minimum 3’ distance between all occupants), and air flow is enhanced by windows being opened.
  • N95 or KN95 masks (provided by College Outdoors) must be worn at all times when in vehicles.
  • Students may drive themselves in their own vehicle to trip destinations, as long as they inform College Outdoors of their plans to do so prior to the trip.


Visit LC’s Covid Resources page for more information on LC’s Covid-19 policies and response.


Three people show off their masks during a forest hike. We can tell they are smiling with their e... Three people show off their masks during a forest hike. We can tell they are smiling with their eyes!