Staff Q&A regarding this weekend's cancellation of the 2018 Snow Camp:
Q: When did you make the decision to cancel the Snow Camp?
A: Our staff began monitoring and evaluating weather conditions on Wednesday, February 14. We took into account various weather models and professional advisement before making the final decision to cancel at 3:30 PM on Friday, February 16.
Q: Why did you cancel the Snow Camp?
A: Participant and staff safety is of our utmost concern; followed closely by participation enjoyment and funding. This weekend's forecasts, road conditions, professional input, and evaluation of participant moral prompted us to cancel this weekend's program. Specifically, National Weather Service models--which prove to be most accurate for the Science and Learning Center--projected upwards of 50 MPH gusts, 6-14 inches of snow, black ice, frigid temperatures, and whiteout conditions that would make travel and recreation difficult. In addition, due to funding limitations and logistical difficulties, we have decided not to attempt to reschedule the snow camp at this time but instead will focus on developing our Summer programs.
Q: Who makes these decisions to cancel or alter programs?
A: Volcano Scouting staff and their adult advisers make all final and announced program alterations. We often include our partners, like the Mount St. Helens Institute and USDA Forest Service, local citizens, staff members, and participants in the discussion.
Q: How will participants be refunded for the cancelation?
A: All participants who paid by card through our website will receive a refund of their participant fees by the end of the month. Our staff has already requested the refunds to be made through our online transaction provider, which are currently being processed. Unfortunately, the original transaction (tax) and processing fees will not be refunded because they are absorbed by the online transaction provider.
Q: Are you sad that your first snow camp was canceled?
A: Yes. We are always sad to cancel or reschedule programs because we know our staff and participants prepare for these events weeks, if not months, in advance. These decisions are extremely hard to make but must be evaluated with a fine-tooth comb. In some instances, the forecasted conditions do not reflect what actually happens, but we must take steps to prepare and mitigate environmental hazards as they appear to us. We apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and interest in our program.