As I'm sure you all know, we are going into lockdown as a country - an awesome move to help look after the vulnerable in our communities. As a result, gear hours, happy hours, club trips and all other club events will be suspended until further notice. Unfortunately, we are unable to offer refunds for membership. If you have club gear out, we have a form for you to fill in so we can keep an inventory of what is out, and this can be returned in due course.
However for all of us who are already missing being in the hills, hope is not lost. There are lots of ways we can look after our wellbeing during the next weeks or months. There are some amazing places to run, bike and walk around Dunedin or wherever you are based (guidelines mean you can do this by yourself or with those you are in lockdown with).
There is also an incredible amount of films and reading material to get us inspired for when we can next get back into the hills. Some of my favourite outdoor films include Dawn Wall, Meru, Reel Rock (Red Bull TV), Free Solo, The Legend of Fred Becky and Valley Uprising. Men Aspiring, Eiger Dreams, So Far So Good, The Great Unknown and To the Mountains are some incredible books that are definitely worth a read too.
As for our OUTC family, that remains even when we can't be together in person. As we saw tonight with our first exec meeting on Zoom, we can still share a lot of meaningful moments online. Keep an eye out for various online events which we have planned, to help keep us all connected. So let's all stay calm, stay positivie and look after ourselves and each other. Our health as a community, and our mental health as individuals are important - let's take care of both! These are the times we find ourselves in, and just like how in the hills time and time again we are forced to be resilient in the face of the unexpected, let's be resilient in the face of Covid-19.
Kia kaha xx
Maddy Whittaker OUTC President