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Toronto Outdoor Club - Rules and Waiver

By participating in any TOC activities, you automatically agree to follow our rules. These rules are current as of Saturday, February 7th, 2009 and are subject to change at any time with or without notice.

1.   CLUB REPRESENTATIVE'S AUTHORITY
Members and guests (Participants) must recognize the authority of the trip coordinator(s)/organizer(s)/officer(s) (Club Representatives) and follow any additional rules they set up for Toronto Outdoor Club (Club) events/outings/activities (Event) - especially if the additional rules involve your safety. Events can be canceled or modified at the discretion of the Club Representative (for lack of interest, inclement weather or having a personal conflict with the Event). The TOC will attempt to replace a Club Representative on an Event should they be unable to attend and inform the Club in a timely manner. Club Representatives have the authority to:

    1. Remove or reject any person from participation if they are not in condition for the Event. This is a safety issue and also helps assure the enjoyment of the other Participants.
    2. Participants are expected to stay together on both the trip to and during the Event. The Club Representative will adjust the pace of the Event to meet everyone's needs.
    3. Participants are expected to commit to the entire Event. The Club Representative cannot do their job if some Participants only go part way through the Event and then return on their own.
    4. If there is an emergency and/or injury, the Club Representative will terminate the Event or let someone help the injured back to transportation or medics. The volunteer will be required to be familiar with the way back.

2.  BEHAVIOR
Remember that you are representing the TOC while participating in any TOC event! Please conduct yourself in such a way as not to detract from the enjoyment of the other Participants (at all times). You may be removed or excluded from the Event should your behaviour warrant such an action. Note that we encourage all members to follow our Etiquette Guidelines at all times while participating in TOC events.

3.  WAIT LIST POLICY    
There is frequently a waiting list for our more popular events.  Generally speaking, members from the wait list are added to the event list in the order in which they signed up.  Certain situation may dictate that the coordinator skip over members on a wait list.

  • Drivers may be added to the event list before other members if additional drivers are required for the event to proceed as outlined.
  • Members with 2 or more no-shows may not be added until all others on the waiting list have been added.  Please refer to the Cancellation Policy.
  • On D4 or Overnight events, members with the required experience as outlined in the event details will be added to the event first.
  • Should the event details stipulate that members have participated in a specific number of TOC events, or TOC events of a specific difficulty level, members fulfilling these requirements will be added to the event list first.
  • On a paid event, members on the waitlist who have prepaid for the event will be given priority should a spot become available. 

4.  CANCELATION POLICY
          a.  How to cancel from an event.
          b.  No-shows
          c.  Cancelation policy for paid events. 
The Toronto Outdoor Club Cancellation Policy has been designed out of consideration for event attendees and coordinators, to ensure that the following situations are avoided as often as possible:

  • Event coordinators and attendees being left to waste time waiting for members who do not show up for an event.
  • Unnecessary last-minute drop-outs which result in people from the waiting list not being able to get on to the event, or the event itself being changed as a result (i.e. not enough drivers)
  • The Toronto Outdoor Club and/or event participants being forced to make up for another member’s financial responsibilities.
These policies are not designed to punish people, but only to be fair to all concerned parties.
As well, exceptions may be made to this standard cancellation policy for any event. If there are exceptions to the policy, they will be stated as part of the event details. Make sure you read the event details carefully.

    A.  How to cancel from an event:   
    If you are unable to attend a TOC event for which you have signed up, please delete your registration as soon as possible to allow another member from the waiting list to take your place.
    • If the event registration date has not yet passed, you may modify your event registration yourself.  Log into the website and select "My Events" from the navigation bar on the left side of the screen click on “Delete” to remove yourself from the event.   Your name will be removed from the list and the coordinator will be notified. 
    • If the event cut-off date has passed, you must contact the event coordinator directly in order to delete yourself from the participant list. The event coordinator’s contact information can be found by going to the event details page and clicking on their name.  If you phone the event coordinator, it is suggested that you follow up with an email to confirm your removal. 
    • Event coordinators will attempt to send out a reminder e-mail within 24 to 48 hours of the carpool/meeting time; HOWEVER, it is the responsibility of each attendee to be aware of their events and abide by the cancellation policy.

    B.  No-shows
    A no-show is awarded to a member who does not show up to an event for which they were registered, when they have not notified the event coordinator at least 24 hours in advance that they will be unable to attend.  An event coordinator may use their discretion in awarding a no-show.  No-shows expire one calendar year after they have been noted. 
    • If a member is more than ten minutes late for a carpool or meeting place, they may be recorded as a "no show" at the coordinator's discretion. If you are uncertain as to where you're supposed to meet, make sure to contact the coordinator for clarification prior to the day of the event.
    • If a member has two or more "no shows" in a year, their spot on future events cannot be guaranteed. The event coordinator may, at their discretion, move that person from the sign up list to the bottom of the event waiting list.
    • If a member has two or more "no shows" in a year, and they put themselves on the waiting list for an event, other members on the waiting list may be added to the event first at the discretion of the event coordinator.
    • If a member has five or more "no shows" in a year, they will receive a warning e-mail and may be removed from the club at the discretion of the club officers.
    • Event attendees are responsible for having a valid e-mail address and for checking their e-mail prior to an event.
    • Event coordinators will be responsible for phoning anyone added from the waiting list within 24 hours of carpool/meeting time; otherwise, a "no show" cannot be logged against any person.
    • Event coordinators may be convinced to reverse a "no show" flag if they are contacted within a reasonable period of time after the event and made aware of extenuating circumstances. This will be up to the discretion of the coordinator and will be handled on a case-by-case basis.  A no-show can not be reversed by any officer of the TOC. 

    C.  Paid Events
    Events requiring pre-payment to the TOC often require that a deposit and/or final payment be made to the venue or service provider in advance.  Additionally, the final cost of the event per person is based on the number registered at the time of the registration cut-of.  Generally speaking, there is no refund for a paid event when a member cancels past the registration cut-off date.  However,
    • The event coordinator may help the member unable to attend contact members on the wait list, in an effort to fill the vacant spot and allow the cancelling member to retrieve some of their payment.  Payment arrangements are to be made between the two members and will not be processed by the Toronto Outdoor Club Treasurer. 
    • If no suitable replacement is found, or the cancelation is made too near to the event date so as to allow for a replacement to be found, no refund will be provided, no matter the reason for the cancelation, should the club or other event participants be required to cover the cost incurred by the cancelling member. 
    • In the event that the vacated spot is able to be filled by a suitable replacement, the transaction fee ($1.50 or 3% of the event cost) will be withheld from the refund, in addition to any costs associated with refunding the money. 

5.  REFUND POLICY

  • A full refund (including transaction surcharge) will be issued if an event is cancelled. 
  • A full refund (including transaction surcharge) will be issued to a member on a wait list if a spot on the event does not become available.
  • A full refund (not including transaction surcharge) will be issued to a member who has paid for an event but cancels before the registration cut-off date passes. 
  • For all other circumstances, please refer to our Cancellation Policy for other information. 

6.  ALCOHOL
The TOC encourages responsible drinking. Some Events may allow for the purchase and/or consumption of alcohol. We simply ask that you do not over do it. By consuming alcohol, you give permission to allow Club Representatives to find alternative ways to transport you home/get you through the remainder of the Event or exclude you from the remainder of the Event.

7.  DOGS
Dogs are permitted on SOME Events. This is at the discretion of the Club Representative and whether the area in which the Event occurs permits them. Please see a specific Event’s details to see if dogs are permitted. You must also register your dog on an Event that permits them, so that the trip coordinator can ensure that not too many are coming along. Your dog will need to be trained to stay with the group and/or be on a leash at all times.  Bringing your dog on an event on which they are not permitted may result in your not being allowed to participate in the event, and will be referred to the TOC Executive for further action. 
Hiking With Your Dog: Most Ontario Parks and organized Conservation Areas at this time allow dogs, with the stipulation that they be physically restrained the entire time. Dogs in backcountry areas of the province are a danger to themselves. For example, they're likely to be spiked by porcupines that prowl campgrounds at night. Even worse, they can endanger their owners and other hikers by provoking wildlife. If a dog runs off, it might lead a bear back with it. If you must hike with a dog, never unleash it.

8.  CHILDREN
Children are permitted on SOME Events. This is at the discretion of the Club Representative. Please see a specific Event’s details to see if children are permitted. The TOC mainly caters to adults and does not want to be liable for a child's injuries on a risky Event.  The Parent or Guardian will be required to sign a Child Waiver before they are permitted to participate.  No other adult may sign the Child Waiver in lieu of the Parent and or Guardian.   Children will not be permitted under any circumstances on cross-border events.

9.  PHOTOGRAPHY
All Participants are encouraged to document the Event; however we stress you take extra measures to protect your equipment from undergoing damage. Also note that, during the Event, Club Representatives may be taking photos for use on the web site, in newsletters or other promotional materials. By participating in a Club Event, you are granting the Club permission to reuse these photos of you in such a manner.

10.  LEAVE NO TRACE
When participating in an outdoors activity, we ask that you leave a clean trail and unlittered camp. We encourage you to clean up after others that have come before you, as much as you can. This allows others to enjoy the trail and camp, as you did.

    1. Stay on the trail. Do not create shortcuts. Shortcuts can cause erosion and damages the trail and trail environment. 
    2. Carry out all litter. Leave the campsite and trail cleaner than you found it. If there is preexisting litter, please dispose or take with you as much as you can.
    3. Do not remove and take with you pieces of nature that you may encounter on the trail. Club Representatives may ask you to surrender such items and/or return them to where you found them.
    4. Protect water sources. Do not use soap in streams/lakes. Wash yourself, utensils, and clothes away from all water sources.
    5. Bury human waste. Where privies are not available, dig a "cathole" at least 6 inches deep and cover afterward. You should be at least 100 yards from any water source or camping area. Do not leave toilet paper above ground.
    6. Sterilize all drinking water. Treat water with iodine tablets, filter or boil before consuming.
    7. Take care with food. Animals frequent camp/picnic areas. If staying overnight, hang food at least 10 feet above ground and away from the trunk of the tree. Leaving food in your automobile is fine, if possible. Also, never leave smelly products (like toothpaste) in your tent.
    8. Be careful with fires. Use campstoves for cooking. Use only downed wood for campfires and keep them small. Never leave a fire unattended and always extinguish it with water. Some areas have fire bans along the trail, so be sure to check before starting a fire.

11.  FIRST AID
Event Attendees are responsible for their own First Aid care and are encouraged to carry a First Aid kit, and have first aid training.

12.  WILDLIFE
Treat wildlife with respect. Always observe from a safe distance. The TOC does not encourage or condone approaching wild animals or attempting to feed them.

13.  FIREARMS/WEAPONS
Firearms/weapons are prohibited on all Events.

14.  EVENT CRASHING POLICY
Event Crashing means attending (or attempting to attend) a club event that you are not registered for. Showing up at a club event, meeting spot, or carpool location with the intention or hope of attending without being on the official sign-up list (or having prior clearance from the event coordinator) is against club policy. Our event sizes are restricted for a number of reasons, and it is not fair to the event coordinator to show up and ask to attend (putting them, and the group, in an awkward position), nor to any members who may still be on the waiting list who would have liked to attend.

Of course, many of our events take place in public venues, accessible to anyone. If you happen to be in the same place as one of our events, this in itself does not constitute crashing, however, integrating into the event group and participating as a member of the group does. If you are simply participating in the same activity at the same place/time as a group, be sure to participate on your own rather than attempting to integrate with the club group.

Crashing a club event may result in a warning from the club executive, and a second incident may result in a three-month-suspension of your club membership.

15.  SAFETY EQUIPMENT
On all TOC events, individual and group safety are of the utmost importance.

Biking: The TOC requires that participants attending cycling events wear a cycling helmet at all times. Failure to comply may result in a review of the participant’s membership.

Boating: The TOC requires that, when in any boat less than 6 meters in length, participants wear a secured Personal Floatation Device (PFD) at all times. Failure to comply may result in a review of the participant’s membership.

Some event coordinators may require event participants to wear specific safety equipment for certain events. Members are required to comply with these requests in order to participate in the particular event. Failure to do so may result in the member not being permitted to participate in the event, as well as a review of the participant's membership.
Also note that all Club Participants MUST sign the TOC waiver before participation is allowed in an Event.

Please see the TOC FAQs should you need more information before joining us on an Event.