Schedule of Activities - View schedule - View meeting locations

COVID-19 Guidelines - October 23

Updated - With Gatineau and the surrounding area now at COVID-19 Level 4–Maximum Alert (red), activities organized in public spaces are now prohibited on the Gatineau side of the Ottawa River. This means that we can't organize hikes in Gatineau Park, for example. As a result, we are only organizing activities on the Ontario side until Quebec again permits activities in the Gatineau area. We are continuing to organize urban walks, hikes, and canoeing outings based on these guidelines.

We ask that you help everyone stay safe by following the basic COVID-19 guidelines at all times, so we that can all continue to enjoy this beautiful outdoors that we have:

  • stay 2 metres apart at an absolute minimum
  • wear a mask when you can't maintain that distance
  • clean your hands

We thank you.

  • Participation
    • You must pre-register; see the Pre-registration section below.
    • Group sizes may be limited.
    • Non-members may participate. When group sizes are limited, members will have priority up to around the outing's pre-registration time.
    • If you need to cancel, please inform the leader as soon as possible so that the leader can open your spot to another person (should space be limited) and so that the leader knows not to wait for you at the meeting location.
    • At the starting point, the leader will ask you that your answers to the health questions are still all "no", to confirm all of your answers and just in case symptoms just appeared.
    • During the outing, if any symptoms appear that might suggest COVID-19, please tell the leader immediately. You will be requested to isolate from the group as much as possible. In addition, you will not be permitted to participate in any OOC outing for the next 14 days. The other participants in the outing will be informed.
    • Dogs are not permitted.
  • Pre-registration (including COVID-19 questions)
    • Required for all outings
    • Pre-register here by the outing's pre-registration deadline. This includes COVID-19 health questions.
    • You will be informed as to whether or not you can participate in the outing. (Restrictions are usually due to limitations on the group size.)
  • Ontario "social circles" and "social gatherings"
    • Updated - Since organized outings are currently not permitted in Gatineau and surrounding areas, only Ontario guidelines are provided here.
    • Social circle
      • Only your household, unless you live alone, in which case you can join one other (consistent) household (description).
    • Social gathering (outdoors)
      • A group of up to any 25 people.
      • Except for people in your "social circle" (defined above), you must stay at least two metres away from others.
      • Updated - We keep our group sizes smaller than 25. When numbers are more than about 5, we divide into smaller subgroups that operate separately.
  • Transportation to and from the starting point
    • We are not organizing carpooling. All participants must meet at the starting location. The outing will be finished once the participants have returned to the starting location.
    • If you are driving, you may take those in your "social circle" OR one person who is NOT in your "social circle". All in the vehicle must be outing participants who have pre-registered and have been accepted for the outing. Please follow best practices for sharing a vehicle (as they apply to the mix of people in your vehicle), such as wearing masks and having everyone in the vehicle sitting as far from each other as possible. Do not consider this a round-about way to organize carpooling: if you do not have a vehicle, you should not ask a driver for a ride.
    • We recognize that this will make transportation to the starting point difficult or impossible for some.
  • During the outing
    • For hikes and walks, please maintain a distance of at least 2 metres from each other unless you're from the same "social circle". Distancing is one of the recognized ways of reducing your chance of passing along COVID-19 to others and your chance of acquiring COVID-19.
    • You must have a mask. The leader will indicate when it needs to be worn. If you do not put on your mask when requested, you will not be permitted to join future outings of any type with the OOC. There will be no exceptions.
    • Stay in the group and away from other groups.
    • Supply your own hand sanitizer and / or disinfectant wipes, etc.
    • Since a shelter is an enclosed space where there is a greater risk of being exposed to the SARS-COVID-2 virus, we will not use any shelters. To reduce the risk of potentially infecting other members of the group, please do not enter a shelter.
    • If possible, please take your own first aid kit.
    • If someone is injured and another group member must provide first aid, unless the injured person and the person providing first aid are part of the same "social circle", neither will be permitted to participate in any OOC outing for 14 days. (Unless the medical situation is urgent, we will try to use emergency personnel.)

We are continually re-evaluating what we might be able to offer as the city, provincial, and federal governments continue to update their recommendations.

Much of Gatineau Park, the NCC Greenbelt, and the NCC's urban lands are open and accessible to individuals to varying degrees.

Information about COVID-19 is available from Ottawa Public Health, Public Health Ontario, Quebec health information, and the Government of Canada.

If you are not a member of the Ottawa Outdoor Club, we invite you to become a member. Details are available on our membership registration page.


Answers to Frequently (or Occasionally)-Asked Questions (FAQ)

  • During the pandemic, we are limiting the activities that we offer based on current conditions, so not all of the information presented herein currently applies. We look forward to the day when we can again provide all of these activities!
  • Check the general requirements by selecting the link for the Activity that you choose, e.g., hiking.
  • Meet at the specified time and location shown in the schedule.
    • If you are arriving by local transit, use the "map" link in the Meet at... column to determine transit routing and timing for the day of the outing using the "Directions" feature of Google Maps
  • Questions? Contact the trip leader.
  • Lyme disease is prevalent in the Ottawa-Gatineau region.
  • Completion times
  • Fees for members and non-members (not all apply to each activity or person): carpooling (COVID-19 restriction), equipment rental, non-member activity fees.
  • Bring
    • snacks, plenty of water, and your meal with you. When the activity runs through mealtime (usually lunch), we take a break for the meal.
    • appropriate clothing and other gear:
      • most times, layers are best
      • if the forecast calls for rain, rain gear appropriate for the forecast conditions
    • a backpack
    • at night, a headlamp or flashlight
  • Specific activities
    • Bicycling
      • You must wear a bicycle helmet when bicycling with us.
    • Hiking
      • We strongly recommend wearing hiking boots, hiking shoes, or running shoes.
      • See the information regarding Lyme disease above.
    • Cross-country skiing
      • Gatineau Park trail conditions: map - trail list
      • Gatineau Park trail usage requires a day or season pass (info). Day passes are available at the trailhead; exact cash required.
    • Snowshoeing
      • Gatineau Park trail conditions: map - trail list
      • Gatineau Park trail usage requires a day or season pass (info). Day passes are available at the trailhead; exact cash required.
      • The Club has snowshoes available for rent (fee).
      • Depending on trail (snow) conditions, many outings designated "Snowshoeing" are easier to do without snowshoes
    • Skating
    • Canoeing
      • The Club has canoes and related equipment for rent (fees), including personal flotation devices (PFDs); you do not need your own. COVID-19 recommendation: for health reasons, we recommend that you provide your own PFD and paddle if you have them.
      • For many canoe outings, you do not need to have prior canoeing experience. Please contact the leader beforehand if this would be your first time in or paddling a canoe.
      • You must wear a life jacket or PFD at all times while in the canoe when canoeing with us. You will not be permitted to participate if you do not wear one.
      • You can provide your own canoe or kayak and related equipment.
      • Spring and fall cold-water warning: The water can be very cold in the spring and fall. The Club's canoes are very stable, but there is always a chance of capsizing, at which time hypothermia becomes a real concern in water below 15° C. Thus, in the spring and fall, in case you capsize, take along a change of underwear and socks in a Ziploc bag or similar. Better yet, bring a full change of clothing (sealed) if possible. We'll have extra warm layers. You may not make a fashion statement in our layers, but you'll be dry and warm!

Trip leaders: information, including sign-up forms containing instructions, is here.

Some of our meeting locations. Check the schedule for each event.
Location Activities Address and notes
Supreme Court (map) walking 301 Wellington Street. We meet by bus shelter at the road on the west side in front of the building, where there is free parking available in the evening.
Dow's Lake Pavilion (map) walking 1001 Queen Elizabeth Drive. Free parking is available after 6:00 PM on Adeline Street and Norfolk Avenue (map), northeast of Carling Avenue and Preston Street.
Sandy Hill Community Centre [SHCC] (map) bicycling 250 Somerset Street East, between Sweetland Avenue and Nelson Street. The actual meeting spot is around the back by the Centre's parking lot, off of Sweetland Avenue.

You can park in the parking lot for free when attending activities at the Centre and temporarily when we are gathering for an outing, but you are at risk of being ticketed if you leave your vehicle there while we are away on an outing. People usually manage to find parking on the nearby streets; ensure that you check the parking duration on the signs.

(This is not the Sandy Hill Community Health Centre, which is elsewhere.)
We go swimming! When the weather's warm and we're hiking or canoeing, plan that we'll spend some time in or by the water. If you like to be in the water, please prepare accordingly!
Bicycle trips occur where noted. Skating and evening walks are in Ottawa. Other outings are in Gatineau Park unless otherwise noted.
We usually stop for lunch somewhere along the route for day outings. Bring your own lunch, and bring water.
Ottawa Outdoor Club Facebook groupFollow our Facebook group

Member or non-member, follow our Facebook group to join our conversation and view photos of past activities.


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