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We need your help for a happy & healthy highlander!

COVID- 19 Procedures & Protocols

Updated April 4, 2022

At Camp Highlander we proudly partner with parents and continue to keep communication as a top priority. As we prepare for another amazing summer and gather information about how we can continue to operate in a safe way as Covid-19 protocols are eased, we will continue to update this page with the latest developments from the NC Department of Health, CDC and the American Camping Association.

1. Before Camp

In order to operate a safe and successful summer, we must partner with parents to send healthy campers to camp at the start of the session! The preparation for camp will require the following things in order to keep the safety of our camp families our top priority.

In an effort to maintain the health and safety of our campers and staff during the session, we ask parents and guardians to notify camp if someone in the family bubble tests positive for COVID-19 after your camper’s arrival to camp so we can be aware of your child’s possible exposure. In addition, we ask that parents notify camp if their child tests positive for COVID-19 within two weeks of returning home from camp.

Pre-Camp Family Bubble

Camp will be a bubble, and while it will be an imperfect bubble, we ask that families begin this bubble seven days prior to their campers arrival.

  • Begins 7 days prior to the opening day of your campers session
  • Wear a face covering at all times when outside of your household
  • Avoid close contact with those outside of your household, maintain a 6ft social distance when outside your household
  • Please do not attend any large gatherings - weddings, birthdays, funerals, play dates and overnight camps, graduations and overnights outside of your household
  • Be aware of your Community Covid19 Levels.

We ask all campers who are still in school or must attend out-of-home childcare during the week leading up to their session to follow all masking and distancing guidelines while there and that you maintain the family bubble expectations while not at school.

Within two weeks prior to camp, if your family bubble is exposed to Covid19 or has a positive case within the family bubble, please contact camp as soon as possible to discuss testing and arrival date for your camper(s).

2. Testing Before Arrival

ALL CAMPERS must provide results of a negative PCR Covid-19 test upon arrival regardless of vaccination status. This test must be taken within 2 to 3 days prior to arrival.You can also show proof of a confirmed COVID-19 case within the last 90 days (meaning you tested positive using a viral test). Failure to provide proof of a negative Covid 19 test will result in campers not being admitted to camp. All expenses incurred from testing will be the responsibility of the families.

Opening Day Testing

Tests that will be accepted on Opening Day:

  • Nucleic Acid Amplification Tests (NAATs) / PCR Tests
  • RT-PCR Test

Tests that will not be accepted on Opening Day:

  • Antigen Tests
  • At Home Rapid Tests

Please visit our pre-camp testing page to learn about our partnership with Vault Health to help our camp families get the test they need.

Vault Health offers an at-home, remotely-supervised saliva-based PCR test for COVID-19 that gives you results in 24-48 hours.

If My camper has COVID19 within 90 Days Before their Arrival:

This means that within 90 days prior to campers session start date, if your camper contracts COVID-19, you need proof of a test from a doctors office, lab, etc. to confirm the positive case. The type of test, PCR, Antigen, etc. does not matter, as long as it is completed and documented by a physician, lab, etc. At-home self tests will NOT be accepted as a proof of a positive case within the 90 days prior to camp.

Failure to provide proof of a negative Covid 19 test OR show proof of a confirmed COVID-19 case within the last 90 days will result in campers not being admitted to camp. All expenses incurred from testing will be the responsibility of the parent or guardian of the camper(s).

Dates for Positive Covid19 Testing Exemption:
Kick Off Camp - March 7th or later
A Session - March 21st or later
B Session - April 4th or later
C Session - April 18th or later

3. Vaccine

For our camper population we will not require the COVID-19 Vaccine. We encourage parents to consult with their child’s physician to see if the COVID-19 Vaccine is recommended. Information regarding the COVID19 Vaccines for Children and Teens

For more information regarding the vaccines and being up to date please visit CDC Frequently Asked Questions about Vaccination

4. Masks


Campers and staff will not be required to wear masks at camp.


Your camper still needs to pack at least 10 washable or disposable masks for camp. In the event that there is a positive case of COVID19 within the camp community, masking requirements may increase.

In the event that there is a confirmed case of COVID19 in the camp community, our community mask policy may look as follows:

All campers and staff will be required to wear masks for a portion of each day at camp. Campers will be required to wear face coverings when within 6ft of anyone outside of their cabin unit. Masks will not be required when campers are in open air spaces, and maintaining social distance or when they are within their cabin unit.

For example: Cabin 12 is scaling to new heights on the climbing wall. The climbing instructor Jackson is wearing a mask, maintaining a social distance and they are outside so campers will not be wearing masks! While a harness is being fitted or they are getting clipped in, campers would be asked to “mask up!” for this brief moment.

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5. Opening Day: Arrival from 8:30AM to 11:30AM

Upon arrival at camp, campers MUST provide results of a negative COVID-19 test regardless of vaccination status OR show proof of a confirmed COVID-19 within the last 90 days.
This means that prior to camp, if your camper contracts COVID-19, you need to get a test at a doctors office, lab, etc. to confirm the positive case. NOT an at-home test

Per CDC guidelines, if campers fall into any of these existing scenarios, they will not be permitted to attend that camp session:

Answering yes to:

  • Positive COVID-19 Test
  • Have you been exposed to COVID-19 in the past 10 days?
    This is in accordance with the recommended quarantine guidance from the CDC. Read more here
  • No Proof of a Negative COVID-19 Test OR show proof of a confirmed COVID-19 within the last 90 days
  • Having traveled to camp in the same vehicle as someone who is symptomatic for COVID-19 and then tests positive for COVID-19
  • Having traveled via airplane to camp with a fellow camper/family member who is symptomatic for COVID-19 and then tests positive for COVID-19

Drop Off Procedure

We will receive campers through a car line with a series of stopping points. Parents or other family members will not be allowed outside the car when dropping off campers. Parents will not be allowed to walk on camp or visit the cabin when dropping off campers. We will be striving to maintain a healthy and safe environment for our campers and staff, so we will ask that parents stay in their vehicle during drop-off (besides when hugging goodbye and taking a quick photo).

  • There will be drive-through stations for you to drop off your campers and complete all necessary opening day activities (i.e. health hut check-in, luggage)
  • Please be mindful of time limitations for our drop-off process to keep traffic flowing

6. Travel to Camp and Carpool

Camp Highlander prefers and encourages all campers to travel to camp by personal vehicle. If a camper must fly to camp, they will be required to wear a face covering and maintain social distance when possible during travel. Please visit our Transportation page for more information.

We understand that for some families to drop-off and pick-up their child from camp is not possible. We ask that you strongly consider only carpooling with other families AFTER your child’s session. Camper’s having traveled via car or airplane to camp with a fellow camper/family member who receives a positive test result for COVID-19 will not be permitted to attend camp that session.

7. Cabin Unit

Our cabin unit has been around since 1957, and it is the ideal model for operating a safe camp experience according to the CDC and ACA. Highlander campers will continue to live, work and play in our cabin unit. Within the cabin unit campers will not have to wear a mask. Please review the Mask section of this action plan for more details. As always, campers will eat and participate in activities as a cabin group.

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8. Daily Health Screening

We plan to conduct daily health screenings for both campers and staff.

9. Camper Choice Days

Camper choice days are a wonderful part of camp! This year we will be having Camper Choice Days! On Camper choice days we offer our regular activities and fun, as well as different activities like Zumba, painting your crazy creek, Tye-Dye, mountain biking and more!

10. Closing Day: Pick up from 8:30AM to 11:30AM

Camper’s will be picked-up from camp via a car line with a series of stopping points similar to drop-off. Parents or other family members will not be allowed outside the car when dropping off campers.

Upon pick-up:

  • Your camper(s) will be brought to your vehicle
  • Please be mindful of time limitations for our pick-up process to keep traffic flowing

11. Communication

Families will be kept informed throughout each session about testing, isolation and quarantine measures if required. Parents of campers that are in a cabin with a camper who tests positive for COVID-19 will be notified first. If there is a positive case of COVID-19 in our camp community, all families with campers in that session will be notified after the families of campers within the cabin.

In an effort to maintain the health and safety of our campers and staff during the session, we ask parents and guardians to notify camp if someone in your family bubble tests positive for COVID-19 after your camper’s arrival so we can be aware of your child’s possible exposure. We also ask that parents notify camp if their child test positive for COVID-19 within two weeks of returning home from camp

Common Questions:

Who should not attend?

The CH team will do everything we can to keep your camper(s) healthy and safe during their session, we cannot guarantee that they will not contract COVID-19 or other communicable diseases at camp. If your child is at higher risk for complications from COVID-19 we highly recommend that you consult your medical provider to discuss the risks of attending camp this summer. Families who are unable to pick-up their child, in the event that their child has tested positive for COVID-19, within 24 hours should not attend camp this summer. If you are worried about your child contracting COVID-19 this summer, we recommend that you roll over your camp enrollment until next year.

What are my options if my child tests positive prior to coming to camp?

If your child tests positive from their pre-camp COVID-19 test?

If you purchased Program Protector insurance, contact them for claims information regarding your policy. Refer back to your confirmation email from Program Protector Insurance for information regarding filing a claim. Pending available space, you can enroll your child or family in a later session during the Season of 2022. Unfortunately we cannot give refunds or credits for late arrivals or early departures. If you are unable to return during the 2022 season, you can use your tuition credit during the 2023 season. This credit is non-transferable and cannot be refunded in subsequent years .

Will you require your staff to be vaccinated?

While vaccination will not be a condition of employment, we are strongly encouraging our staff to be UP TO DATE on their COVID-19 vaccine prior to the 2022 season. Being up to date means you have received both of your primary doses and your booster. Read here for more information

What if my child gets sick while at camp?

Should your child become sick at camp, our medical staff will evaluate and monitor their symptoms at our Health Hut. If COVID-19 is suspected and they test positive for it, we will require that you make arrangements to pick them up within 24 hours. Our medical staff will provide the attentive and loving care that we always do for your child until you arrive. As always, communication is our top priority while your child is in our care and you will be contacted by our medical staff.

What if my child is in a cabin with a positive case?

The entire cabin will be screened and tested. Parents will always be notified for permission for their child to be tested. With no symptoms and negative test results, the cabin will then continue to enjoy camp activities and fun, with extra distancing measures in place to protect the camp community at large. Even if a portion of the cabin population is vaccinated, cabins will increase their masking and distancing protocols if there is a positive case in the cabin.

What if my child is vaccinated?

According to the CDC, those exposed to COVID-19 that are vaccinated do not need to be tested unless showing symptoms. However, they do recommend in a “congregate setting” those who are vaccinated should be tested when exposed to a positive case or showing symptoms. Therefore we will be testing all campers and staff who have been exposed whether they are vaccinated or not. Parents will always be notified for permission for their child to be tested.

Can I visit camp in the summer?

In an effort to protect the health and safety of our camp bubble, we will not allow visitors or tours of camp during the summer season.

Program Protector Insurance

Unfortunately, you may need to cancel your camp enrollment due to a family emergency, illness, injury, or other unforeseen circumstances. To that end, we’ve partnered with Program Protector, a third-party travel insurance company to provide an optional safety net for you. Program Protector is available while completing your camp application, and we encourage you to consider this option to protect from 65% - 100% of your camp investment depending on the reason for cancellation.

Program Protector Family Letter

Program Protector COVID 19 FAQ

If you have questions please call the Customer Service Specialists at Program Protector (MH Ross) at 1-800-423-3632.

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