Dear Trip Leader,

Thank you for volunteering to lead an outing for the Genesee Valley Chapter of the Adirondack Mountain Club. Your help is crucial if our Chapter is to continue to provide our members with a great variety of trip and activities in the future. In an effort to make your undertaking as simple and safe as possible, you should be familiar with following items. [To print a pdf document, make sure you click on the print button of Adobe Reader; not the browser print button]

  • Liability Release Form - (forms) The Genesee Valley Chapter requires that all participants and leaders in Chapter outings sign the liability form in order to strengthen the protection of the leader, the Chapter, and the Club. Please have all participants sign the form once you have arrived at the trailhead or paddling put-in and before you start your outing. When feasible on outings consisting of multiple day trips you may want to have separate sign up sheets for each day. All signed liability forms should be sent to the Chapter Statistician, Jackson Thomas, after the trip. His address appears on the bottom of the form.
  • Any person under 18 years of age participating in a Genesee Valley Chapter of ADK sponsored outing must sign and have a parent or guardian sign the Liability Release Form or provide a signed Release of Liability for Minor form for each outing. If not accompanied by a parent or legal guardian, then a signed Emergency Medical Care form is also required. All signed liability forms should be sent to the Chapter Statistician, Jackson Thomas, after the trip. His address appears on the bottom of the Liability Release Form.
  • Guidelines for ADK Chapter Outings - Whether you are leading an outing for the first or tenth time, we would suggest that you review this form before you begin the trip. You may learn something new or simply be reminded of items you may have forgotten.
  • "Taking a Hike?" - The ADK's brochure will assist both you and potential trip participants in your preparation for the outing.
  • Accident Report Forms - In the event that an accident occurs resulting in injury during an outing, please complete the form and return it to both the Trails Chairs and Club Headquarters (814 Goggins Rd., Lake George, NY 12845-4117) immediately upon your return from the outing.
  • Trip Outing Summary Form - Please fill out this form for the appropriate committee chair: Trails, Waterways or Young Members.
  • Optional Participant Letter (pdf ) - We have created an example of a letter that you may wish to send to participants, especially those you are not familiar with and newer members. We would encourage you to modify the letter to fit the particular needs of your outing. When appropriate a pre-trip meeting is a good alternative.
  • Participant Questionnaire - A guideline for interviewing potential participants who are interested in your outing, these questions will help you ascertain if the participant has the qualifications and experience for the outing.
  • Backpackers List - The listing of suggested minimum gear requirements may be included if you choose to send a participant letter or whenever you feel that the participant will benefit from the list. Please modify to fit the needs of your outing.

The following items should also be taken into consideration in order to insure the success of your outing.

  • You may wish to prepare an actual written trip itinerary, including directions to the trailhead, trail descriptions and maps, to further assist the participants in preparing for the outing.
  • For the protection of both the leader and the participants, there should never be any unadvertised 'additions' to an outing itinerary. Participants should never feel compelled by others to undertake more than they had originally anticipated. For liability reasons, the original advertised trip description must be accurate and include all possibilities which are under consideration.
  • If your outing requires a reservation deposit (i.e. lodging at a campground, ADK facility, or other similar accommodations), you should obtain deposits from participants as they sign up. They should be made aware that the deposit is 'at-risk' and only refundable to the extent the leader is refunded. This applies whether the participant cancels or the leader is forced to cancel the outing. If a leader cannot 'finance' the initial entire deposit, the Trails Chair has the authority to loan the funds.
  • Due to the new High Peaks management program, the maximum group size for overnight backpacking outings is limited to 8 participants including the leader. (This does not include overnight outings into the ADK backcountry facilities.) If you are unaware of the other regulations (i.e. restrictions on camping, campfires, and parking, particularly at South Meadow-Flowed Lands corridor and the Loj Road), please contact Deb Fedele.

Again, thank you for volunteering to lead an outing. If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please do not hesitate to Trails Chair at return the Liability Form and the Trip Outing Summary Form to the Trails or Waterways Chair as soon as possible. Also, please consider composing a write-up for the Geneseean. We all enjoy hearing about other's adventures. E-mail the Geneseean Editor, at  If any of these email addresses do not respond, please send a note to the with the problem, we do want to hear from you.