Cold River Camp: COVID-19 and the 2021 Season

We are excited about our plans to reopen Cold River Camp for the 2021 summer season! The Cold River Camp Committee is committed to operating the Camp safely and has spent a great deal of time learning how to prevent and to mitigate COVID-19 in our small community. As we receive information from the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services, and from the AMC, we will make specific plans so that all aspects of Camp life will remain welcoming and safe.

Based on our current plans, here are answers to some common questions. Due to the changing nature of COVID-19 and regulations surrounding health and safety, some of the information below may change. Please check back regularly, as we will update these frequently asked questions (FAQs) on a regular basis.

Coronavirus FAQ (Updated 1 May 2021)

Will Cold River Camp be open this summer?

Yes, we have a plan for opening to guests as described below. Guided by the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services, the AMC’s experience, and outside medical advice, we have been planning for a modified Camp opening since September. We will limit Camp occupancy to approximately 1/2 the normal occupancy to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19. Camp was officially opened the weekend of May 7-9, with lots of work cleaning and getting camp ready for your arrival. We look forward to a full Camp in 2022.

Summer weeks will consist of six nights instead of the usual seven, with Sunday arrival and Saturday morning departure. This will allow the Croo and staff the extra time necessary to thoroughly clean cabins, bathrooms, the kitchen and other spaces.

To reduce exposure to COVID-19, the Camp will not provide linens to summer campers in 2021. Campers will need to bring their own sheets, blankets/sleeping bags, pillows, and towels.

Won’t the vaccine make all this go away?

Eventually we all hope that is the case. It seems clear that ultimately the world and Cold River Camp will be a safer place once a vaccine is fully distributed. In the meantime, there is little likelihood that the entire Camp population will be immunized by summer 2021. Nor will we know this summer the extent to which mass immunizations will have protected the population at large. Conscientious planning requires us to begin preparations as described on this page.

What can I do to reduce the risk of exposure to campers, other Croo/staff and myself?

Campers should not come to Cold River Camp if they have symptoms consistent with COVID-19 (such as fever, cough, and recent loss of smell), have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or are quarantined for potential exposure to COVID-19.

Those who are at higher risk of getting sick from COVID-19, or who may expose family members who are at higher risk, may want to consider not coming. See CDC Guidelines for high risk.

In the spirit of community, we encourage all guests to embrace the well-established best practices that have emerged for personal and group safety and health. All campers must bring their own masks. Masks must be worn in all public interior spaces, on the Lodge Porch and in any interior space aside from one’s own cabin. Campers are required to wear masks outdoors if unable to maintain a physical distance of at least six feet from others, including on hiking trails.

All campers, Croo and staff are expected to maintain a minimum of six feet from one another, with the exception of members of their party/group.

What will meals be like?

All food will be “to go.” Delicious, home-cooked meals will be prepackaged for pick up from the Lodge Porch. Each cabin will have an assigned thermal bag packed for you with dinner and breakfast each day. Trail lunches ordered the night before and prepared by the kitchen team will be available each morning. You may eat outside at a location of your choice or in your cabin. CRC will provide additional amenities such as extra picnic tables, canopy tents, portable tables and extra chairs in your cabins for your use. You can still have a picnic style meal behind the Lodge.

Will the Lodge, Rec Hall, and Library be open?

While our procedures may change due to an unexpected change in State and AMC policy, our current plan is to provide a number of socially distanced tables in the lodge for eating meals. The Rec Hall is currently being used for storage (removed tables, blankets and other bedding, etc) and the Library is currently closed. We are working to revisit these restrictions prior to the start of the summer season so that common indoor spaces can be used safely and in accordance with procedures approved by the AMC.

Will the dam and the Tea House be open?

Yes! You can spend time relaxing in your cabin, go down to the dam to swim or just sit on the warm rocks, and enjoy time in the Tea House reading.

Will Camp group activities be different?

Group activities, including the Sunday night all-Camp Meeting, evening programs, Square Dances, and the Talent Show, have been Cold River Camp traditions for many years. However, in order to reduce risk of COVID-19 exposure they will not be held in 2021.

Will there be led hikes at Cold River Camp this summer?

For a variety of reasons, there will be no led hikes in 2021. Instead a Hike Consultant will be available all summer at set times each day to support you in trip planning so you have a great hiking experience. There will be maps and guidebooks available. This is a great summer to enjoy hiking at Camp with your family group. Check the CRC website for the Hike Consultant weekly roster.

Will there be changes to the bathrooms?

We are planning to strengthen daily cleaning procedures to ensure the bathrooms and other high-touch areas are thoroughly cleaned and disinfected. Bathrooms will be modified to provide enhanced COVID safety.

Will kids come free Weeks 1-9?

Yes, all Weeks, 1-9, are now Kids Stay for 50% due to financial considerations this year, but we expect to return to the Kids Free program in 2022. This is a new promotion as of 5/1/21 and is retroactive to all previous reservations.

What is Camp’s cancellation policy?

Cancellations received prior to May 1 will receive a 50% deposit refund. No deposit refunds will be made after May 1.

In fairness to those denied space, payment in full is required if a cancellation request is not received at least 14 days prior to scheduled arrival.

If, within 14 days prior to arrival to Camp, you are experiencing symptoms of COVID or have been exposed to COVID please do not come to Camp. If you experience COVID symptoms while at Camp, you will be asked to leave. The Manager will discuss your reservation options at that time.

If the entire Camp season is cancelled due to state or AMC regulations, the full amount will be refunded.

Cold River Camp recommends that campers purchase travel insurance to cover expenses in the case of personal cancellation and in the case of Camp cancellation.

Have more questions? Email