Washington Alpine Club COVID-19 Response

Unfortunately I have to reach out regarding the recent COVID-19 virus issues in our area. At the board meeting last night we discussed at length how this affects the club as a whole and our upcoming classes and activities. Our member’s health and safety is of paramount importance to the board so we are taking these decisions seriously and with the guidance of the Public Health – Seattle & King County recommendations that have been issued thus far. We will continue to closely monitor the updates issued by Public Health and communicate to you how they affect the club.

With that being said, we have decided to close the cabin for the next two weeks, effective immediately for all members. Nathan Hale will finish their day use of the cabin on Friday at lunch, and after that no one will be allowed to enter the cabin (day or night) until further notice. I will be coordinating with Mike Mahanay to ensure everything is taken care of that needs to be in order to properly shut down the facilities. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause, however we must insist that the cabin remain closed. The board will meet again on March 16th to reassess the situation and any updated recommendations released by King County. At that time we will determine and communicate a course of action. In the meantime we will be monitoring the situation closely and if any necessary information presents itself we will communicate that out to the club immediately.

Unfortunately this also comes at a time when we are getting our basic climbing class off and running and trying to train a new crop of incoming instructors. As of right now we are meeting with the co-chairs to determine a course of action to try and keep the course running while also addressing health concerns and how we respond to the recommendations released by the health department, which are not conducive to the classroom scenario. More info will be distributed to students and instructors via Pat O’brien and the BCC Co-chairs as well as the instructor training weekend leads Mike Daly and Kelly Coons. Please keep an eye on your emails for updates.

If anyone is feeling sick please use common sense and stay home, wash your hands regularly, and keep an eye on the Public Health information.

https://kingcounty.gov/depts/health/news/2020/March/4-covid-recommendations.aspx

I know everyone will have a varying comfort level and response to current events, and will have opinions on how we respond when it comes to the club. I ask for your patience as we navigate through this. We are doing our best to make decisions in line with the health department but primarily with the health and wellness of our members in mind. If you have any concerns or questions please feel free to reach out to me directly, I am happy to discuss any decisions further or put you in touch with the correct chair or lead for class or instructor information.

Thank you and stay healthy,

Chelsea Sweetin

WAC President