Our priority continues to be the health and well-being of our students and staff. We are basing programmatic decisions and protocols on CDC guidance along with the specifics of operating outdoor activities in wilderness and urban environments. These Program Protocols and course activities are subject to change. Please check this page for updates. Updated 4/19/2024


If you DO NOT consent to the below protocols, please contact your course/program representative to cancel your/your child’s participation.  

Illness Symptoms 

Participants must be symptom free of COVID-19 and other significant infectious illnesses, such as the flu, 72-hours prior to course start.  

Recent COVID-19 Diagnoses 

Participants who have tested positive for COVID-19:

  • 90 days - 11 days prior to course start:
    • Must be fully recovered (symptoms resolved) and test negative on an at-home rapid antigen test (confirming you are no longer infectious) to attend course.
    • Please notify us of the date of the positive test – having diagnosis dates on record is vital to any on-course PCR testing we may conduct.
  • 10 days or less prior to course start: we are unable to accept you onto course.  


Be Prepared - Determine a Backup Travel Plan 

Out of an abundance of caution, clients should consider identifying an administrator or another adult to stay nearby for the duration of the course to be responsible for any students needing to depart course due to COVID-19. 

Should any participants need to depart Outward Bound due to a positive COVID-19 test result or other illness symptoms:

  • on course start day - travel plans must be adjusted that day
  • during course - participant(s) must depart within 48 hours

YOUTH (Course Age Ranges 14-18): coordinate travel with a parent, family member or other trusted adult.

ADULT (Course age ranges 18+, 18-25, 30+): coordinate travel with a parent, family member or other trusted adult OR coordinate a hotel room and shuttle to the hotel, provided the participant meets the hotel’s age requirement for check-in. 

Please reference the CDC recommendations for Protecting Yourself When Using Transportation and Considerations for Travelers.



Illness Symptoms 

  • Participants will be screened upon arrival for COVID-19 and other illness symptoms. If any signs or symptoms of illness exist, participants will not be allowed to start the course.



COVID-19 Antigen Test
  • North Carolina Outward Bound School Staff may administer COVID-19 testing during course when symptoms of communicable disease are present, or when exiting isolation protocol.  
  • Should a participant test positive for COVID-19 during course, that individual will be removed from the course and placed in isolation to prevent spread.
  • Participant will need to depart Outward Bound within 48 hours of positive test result.


Mask Wearing Protocol 
The North Carolina Outward Bound School remains vigilant regarding the emergence of future COVID-19 variants and may adjust masking protocol if conditions warrant. 

Masks will be required when a person has symptoms of a communicable disease.


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