Since the arrival of Covid-19 on the island of Ireland, many aspects of our lives have changed. Together, we have adhered to government restrictions and public health advice. Thanks to this collective effort, progress has been made in the fight against Covid-19 allowing a significant easing of restrictions. For hillwalkers and climbers, the easing of travel restrictions facilitates our return to activity.
We must remember that Covid-19 remains, and that we all play our part in keeping it suppressed. As restrictions ease our personal and social responsibility become ever more important.
Mountaineering Ireland has been preparing for a safe and responsible return to hillwalking and climbing. In doing so we have engaged with a range of stakeholders in six broad categories: 1) Participants - both members and non-members; 2) Landowners and land-managers; 3) Rescue organisations; 4) Other sports organisations; 5) People with medical and scientific expertise; and 6) Government departments and state agencies in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.
Part of this preparation has been producing specific advice to support hillwalkers and climbers in making a return to activity in a safe and responsible manner in the presence of Covid-19. This advice has been informed by input from members, staff and volunteers in the Hillwalking Committee, Climbing Committee and the Access & Conservation Committee. Underpinning this specific advice is the general public health advice issued on reducing the transmission of Covid-19.
This advice is aimed at all hillwalkers and climbers. Its purpose is to highlight the additional considerations that we should be aware of, in the presence of Covid-19. It builds on good practice which is commonplace among responsible hillwalkers and climbers; checking weather forecasts, checking access arrangements, selecting routes that are appropriate for fitness, skill and experience, environmental awareness etc.
Mountaineering Ireland has updated our Covid-19 Advice for Hillwalkers and Climbers document and summary sheet. These resources can be accessed via the following links:
Covid-19 Advice for Hillwalkers and Climbers Full Document