Best Practices for Winter: More Fun Outside, Less Indoor Gatherings

Avoid social gatherings during the holidays in Truckee, California.

Photo: Paul Hamill Photography

Cold weather usually forces us inside, but this winter, indoor social gatherings are a high-risk activity. Instead, gather everyone virtually on Zoom or head outdoors with your household bubble, where fresh air adventures like skiing/riding or snowshoeing pose a lower Covid risk. For more tips on winter best practices, keep reading.

What are “social gatherings?”

The simple definition of a gathering is when people from multiple households get together, inside or outdoors. The key point here is that gatherings expose you to households outside of your own.

Why are social gatherings just so dangerous? Well, to put it simply, we let down our guard. These intimate get-togethers feel “normal” but it’s this feeling of normalcy that causes us to forgo the safety precautions that are commonplace in public settings. We hug, we spend time with others within 6 feet, we don’t wear our masks, we forget to sanitize surfaces, we use someone else’s restroom, we don’t wash our hands… When these things happen, our risk of contracting COVID-19 jumps up. Remember, the safest way to gather is to spend time with people in the same household or to gather virtually.

Plan a trip to Truckee-Tahoe ski resorts
Photo courtesy of Northstar California Resort

Are social gatherings allowed in Truckee, California?

Truckee is under the PURPLE (widespread) Tier in the Blueprint for a Safer Economy. View our KNOW BEFORE YOU GO page to understand the current status and get daily travel updates.

In the PURPLE Tier, small private gatherings are allowed as long as they adhere to the following modifications:

  • Masks and physical distancing are required
  • No more than 3 separate households may attend (including the host’s)
  • Gatherings should be 2 hours or less
  • Those with symptoms must not attend
  • Those at high risk of severe illness strongly encouraged not to attend
  • Singing, shouting, chanting, cheering, or exercising strongly discouraged

Here in Truckee, California, contact tracing has indicated that social gatherings are high-risk for community transmission. Examples include family reunions and dinner parties. It’s recommended to avoid gathering when possible.

Go cross country skiing in Truckee, California.
Photo Credit: Jay Lynn, courtesy of Tahoe Donner Association

Best practices for winter gatherings.

Follow these tips to avoid social gatherings and stay safe and healthy throughout the winter season.

Siobhan Kenney

About Siobhan Kenney

Siobhan traveled the American West as a National Park Ranger before setting down roots in Truckee. Outdoor adventure is her bread and butter and most days you can find her skiing, trail running, or backpacking.  Follow along with her adventures on Instagram @siokenney.