Education Archive


Apr 1, 2020

Jim Burdick


As I write this, I’m currently listening to NPR’s coverage of schools across our state having to figure out ways to deliver meals and instruction to students as we wade through the extremely uncertain times that the Coronavirus (COVID-19) has brought us. As this unfolds, many of us will be finding ourselves with extra time on our hands due to changes in our work environment or our decision to socially distance ourselves from others. I’m not sure about you, but extra time stuck at home is no way to cure my spring fever restlessness.

You might be thinking this might be the perfect time for a hike. And you might just be right, as long as you don’t have any COVID-19 symptoms like a fever, cough, or shortness of breath. Many of us hike for the very purpose of socially distancing ourselves, so here is what you can do to protect yourselves from COVID-19 while you hike.

Choose a trail that you know is not going to be busy so that you are away from the crowds. If you are hiking with people from outside your own household, consider driving separate cars and maintaining a 6-foot radius between hiking partners. The virus is spread by respiratory droplets that can travel through the air or be picked up on hard surfaces, which it can definitely survive on long enough for your hiking partner to pick up the virus when they open up your car door. Because it is spread by respiratory droplets, it’s very important to cover any coughs and sneezes with a tissue or the inside of your elbow. Bring (and use) hand sanitizer that is made of more than 60% alcohol, the minimum as recommended by the CDC. Lastly, wash your hands when you return home while singing your favorite 20-second hiking song.

Be aware that many facilities like the ADK Loj or Johns Brook Lodge are closed as of this writing even though the trails are still open. Many other facilities in and around the Adirondacks are closed until further notice. Research online or call ahead if you plan on visiting any public buildings. Stay healthy.