As of May 15th, the NY Finger Lakes, and the Southern Tier Regions can begin to reopen after the NY Pause for COVID-19. In Phase 1 of this reopening, outdoor “low-risk recreational activities” are now allowed. Based on this, the Springwater Trails executive board met Thursday to discuss resuming our Sunday hikes. So, our good news is we believe we can carry on Sunday hikes starting May 24. (this gives us time to get a description of each hike out to you, and it avoids the rain expected this Sunday).
We are going to make some changes to the hike format for the rest of this spring, as our best effort to keep everyone safe from the Coronavirus.
- We are going to emphasize kayaking over hiking. Kayaking naturally enforces social distancing, which clearly makes it a low-risk activity. We are calling this Water Hiking.
However, we will continue to plan one or two regular hikes with different levels, to allow hikers who do not wish to kayak to participate.
- We plan to avoid shared food and restaurants for our socials following our hikes.We will try outdoor picnics.
- Hiking groups will be limited to 10 hikers or less.
- Hikers will need to maintain a six foot separation between participants, and should carry a face mask, and wear it when social distancing may be difficult to maintain.
- Initially, hikes will be out and back or loops to avoid carpools.
Our primary concern is our pre-hike gathering, and the loading and unloading of kayaks. During these times when close contact will be more likely, we need all participants to take extra care to maintain proper social distancing. I am sure that Springwater Trails will take the safety procedures seriously while still making our hikes a friendly, inviting activity.
So, get out your Kayaks, and your hiking equipment. We will send out the specifics about the May 24th hike/kayak at Hemlock Lake next week, and we hope to see some of you on the water.