Starting May 15th, Fayette County will join the 13 other counties in Southwestern Pennsylvania in moving to Gov Wolf’s yellow phase of re-opening. Things will look a little differently in Ohiopyle as we slowly reemerge from our COVID-19 closures. Here is what you can expect starting next week.
What will be open?
Laurel Highlands Outdoor Center will be open for retail sales, bicycle rentals, and Middle and Lower Yough equipment rentals. Guided rock climbing and mountain biking tours are available to book.
Laurel Highlands River Tours will be open for guided tours on the Lower and Middle sections of the Yough River.
Ohiopyle Old Mill General Store will be open for ice cream and retail sales. Ohiopyle Mining Company will be open at the General Store as well.
Yough Lake Campground will be open for all campsite and cabin rentals.
Unfortunately, the Ohiopyle Zip-line Adventure Park will remain closed until further notice.
What will be different?
To enter any of our retail locations, or participate in any activity, you will be required to have some sort of face covering over your mouth and nose. We will be limiting the number of people inside our retail locations. We will be serving ice cream at our service window on the porch at the Old Mill General Store if you wish to remain outside. Seating areas will be spaced out to provide for social distancing. Bicycle rental sign ups can be done from outside the Outdoor Center as well.
River Tours will be limited to group sizes of less than 25 people, including guide staff. All participants will be required to wear face coverings in the transport to and/or from the river. Face coverings are not recommended for use while on the river. For the Lower Yough, we will be offering the Express and Premium options as well as Rentals for now. For the Middle Yough, we will be offering Premium tours or Rentals.
What mitigations methods will be used?
We will be following the Pennsylvania Department of Health and CDC guidelines on the best practices to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
Social distancing will be encouraged everywhere. We will be placing markings on the floor at our retail locations to designate where you should stand when at cash registers, placing ice cream orders, signing up for rafting tours, etc. We will deploy sneeze guards at all registers and check-in areas. We ask that only the group organizer of a rafting group enter the check-in area to register for your tour.
Cleaning and disinfecting will be done regularly. We will be cleaning and disinfecting all equipment and vehicles as per the manufacturer’s recommendations. Frequently touched surfaces will be cleaned at least once per hour. Hand sanitizer dispensers will be placed in a variety of locations for everyone’s use.
All our staff will be educated on signs and symptoms of COVID-19. They will also received training on proper use of personal protection equipment (PPE), effective social distancing measures, and proper hand-washing techniques. Our staff will be required to wash their hands at least once per hour or to use an approved hand sanitizer. They will be wearing face coverings and gloves as necessary. All our staff will be monitored daily for any signs or symptoms of illness. Anyone showing symptoms will be quarantined immediately.
We encourage anyone, guest or staff member, who may be feeling ill, is exhibiting any signs or symptoms of illness, or is at a higher risk of serious illness, to remain home to help avoid the spread of COVID-19.
So now that we know we’re opening next Friday, and will be following all of the proper mitigation protocols, we encourage everyone to make plans to join us in the 20,000 acre playground that is Ohiopyle State Park. There has never been a better time to get outside and enjoy outdoor recreation. The river is calling!
And remember, our Pay Early Special has been extended until May 31.
We can’t wait to see you!