The ice is forming, the snow is falling and the mountain sports we all love are in full swing. Through our courses and private guiding, guests are learning the skills they want and need to get out and enjoy the backcountry this season.
We have been managing programming since mid-May with tight COVID-19 policies and procedures to minimize the risk to guests, staff and all others that we may come in contact with. Yesterday, the Alberta government announced a State of Public Health Emergency due to the spike in COVID-19 cases in the province. Additional government restrictions will be implemented starting Friday, November 27th in Alberta Health’s “Enhanced Status” areas and will be re-evaluated by the Alberta government on December 15, 2020. We continue to follow Health authorities’ recommendations and requirements as more information is released and will be adding the following measures to our current policies and procedures:
- AST classroom training days will be moved online until December 19th, 2020, and our field days will remain at a low 1 guide to a maximum of 8 students. Physical distancing and mask use protocols will continue to apply.
- All programs indoor meetings will be kept to a minimum and will be limited to waiver signing and equipment fitting before heading into the field. Whenever possible we will use an online platform for non-field-based content.
- Guides/staff will continue to drive separately to minimize close contact with guests and other guides.
- Office staff will continue to work remotely where practical and the office will be closed for drop-in visits.
These restrictions will be re-evaluated to align with Health Authorities mandatory requirements, current knowledge, and best practice for our industry. Our specialty has always been navigating risk in the mountains and passing those skills onto our guests. Our goal is to minimize the additional risk of COVID-19 while still providing the high-quality skills and experiences that we set the industry standard for.
We will be in contact with guests who are signed up for programs between now and Dec 19th, 2020 to provide them with specific details for their programs.
As always, we are here to answer your questions and are excited to see you in the mountains!
Jesse de Montigny