COVID-19 Affecting Your Plans?

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OldBill

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Just wanted to add some references to my prior post regarding looking at positivity rates vs just total cases or even total new cases. Total cases plotted logarithmically is a good measure. Naturally, cases are always going up; ie, "Number of new cases at an all time high" is every day and isn't exactly newsworthy. What matters is how fast, which is what a logarithmic plot shows.

Even better is a way to measure how we are doing vs the virus: is it becoming more rampant or are we starting to slow it "bend the curve"?

That's where plots of % positives as well as logarithmic new case plots play an important role. The number of tests are increasing, but in general, at a linear rate. This can be clearly seen in the same graph as % positives.

The GOOD NEWS: it appears the most recent surge is flattening (starting to peak) when looked at as a whole nation.
https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/testing/individual-states/usa

Even hard-hit states like Arizona:
https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/testing/individual-states/arizona

The problem of just accepting some statement of increases (even in rates) without looking at the data can be seen in Wyoming's chart. Here, the numbers are just too small and sampling is much less. Therefore, the plot is less smooth (higher uncertainty):
https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/testing/individual-states/wyoming

If guidelines and restrictions were followed as tightly as in the NE:
https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/testing/individual-states/connecticut

Finally, total cases, by state, with color coding for how fast new cases are being added:
https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/data/new-cases-50-states

One more way COVID has affected my plans. I have to monitor these trends to make decisions weeks or months away.
 
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MikeM

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We leave tomorrow for our trip to Sperry Chalet in Glacier National Park. We are hoping that by hiking into the Chalet we will be far enough from the main roads to get away from the large crowds. The stories from the past week or two since they open Going to the Sun Road have been pretty crazy. One source said the parking lot at Logan Pass was completely full before sun up the other day. Yikes!
 

Rockskipper

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I know we try to stay away from politics here, but this has become politicized. So, OK, @OwenM here's my feelings, but in the words of a respected economist, Wolf Richter (very non-partison, just the facts):

"Until recently, the narrative from the White House has been that this virus is a hoax and a way by Democrats to engineer a coup, or whatever BS, and that masks were part of this. The White House has politicized the virus and the wearing of masks. That was the top-down narrative, and some people believed this BS and it turned them reckless.

As a result of this catastrophic political narrative early on, that people believed, we now have huge outbreaks in the US, and deaths have started to surge again. Hospitals in some of those areas are overwhelmed. Now, over half the people in those hospitals are under 40. Refrigerated morgue trailers are parked outside the hospitals.

The White House, including Trump himself, have now done a complete 180, and they’re pushing people to wear masks and they’re acknowledging that this is serious. But the 180 came too late."

from https://wolfstreet.com/2020/07/21/u...-may-not-happen-till-late-2021-or-even-later/

 

Nethos

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Feb 23, 2017
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Some people will continue to be more concerned with the inconveniences the pandemic poses to their wants, then with the very real threat it(and their actions) poses to others.

That is, until it effects them personally beyond inconvenience.

I will never forget riding through the completely abandoned streets of NYC, past refrigerated trailers converted to morgues as long as I live. Truly scary shit. It’s mind boggling that people continue to insist that this is overblown or out of proportion or “dramatic.”
 

Yvonne

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Most of my plans have been fairly disrupted. I was able to visit family in Idaho for Father's Day, although after seeing how people were behaving in the area we decided it would be a while before we visit again. We have a trip to Yellowstone planned for mid-August. We reserved a campsite in Grant Village in January. If it still happens we don't plan on spending a lot of time in the campground or anywhere near a boardwalk. Then the only other thing we actually have planned is a trip to St. George over Thanksgiving. We were planning visit Zion during this trip. I am keeping an eye on the shuttle situation to see if reservations will still be required. I'm not really looking forward to being packed in a shuttle bus.

I have been getting a bit stir crazy so I have decided to relearn fly fishing after a 20 year break. If anyone has any suggestions on good beginner fly fishing waters in way up Northern Utah let me know.
the shuttle busses in Zion are not packed at all. They only allow 33 people total, which is the main bus with driver plus the addition. 80% of the seats are taken out. If I feel comfortable taking the shuttle, then it is now. About 75%-85% of visitors wear a mask on the bus. You can only board the shuttle via a specific 1-hour window, there are no lines to wait for the shuttle at the VC. My colleagues are super strict and let only the ones on the bus that have a timed ticket for the one hour window that on your ticket.
I really like the shuttle situation as it is right now and I wish we would keep that way forever. I tested the shuttle last Friday and it was so relaxed.

I would be more worried about St. George, barely anyone wears a mask and we finally have a mask mandate for some of the stores. It's much safer in Zion than it is in St. George.
 

Kmatjhwy

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Kmatjhwy

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OldBill

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Didn't want to make this a daily update, but the numbers changed dramatically for Wyoming: 7 day avg positivity is now 23% on
https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/testing/individual-states/wyoming

Found that was pretty alarming, given it was near 3% the last few weeks. As stated earlier, it's good to look at the data carefully. I found that WY is only required to report positive cases, not negative ones. So, they report 50 positive cases and 50 tests. Looks like a huge spike. It is rather, terrible sampling. So, that value may have limited meaning, though states like CT, NY and NJ use it to decide on entry to their list of high risk states. I hope they change that. They had been testing a few thousand not that long ago.

However, 50 cases is still bad as the trend in new cases is higher. Another good site for COVID info by state is
https://covidactnow.org/state/WY?s=756131

I've also heard from multiple sources that the Parks are not enforcing CDC guidelines. Many of those 2-3 million visitors are coming from regions with high infection rates. I wish the best for my Wyoming friends.

Surprisingly, they list positivity at 15% (also 7 day) so these sites are not consistent with updates. For states with small numbers, like WY, that makes a big difference.

Still, some hope that better times will come. Jackson finally passed a mask mandate and growth in daily new cases over the US as a whole appears to be slowing. Active cases will lag that by 2 wks and deaths by 4-6 wks.
https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/us/

I hope for the best for all here and all elsewhere!

JulyNewCases.png
 
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OwenM

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This site conveniently shows the current travel restrictions, state-by-state. I don't know how often it will update, but it's nice to see everything grouped together when eyeing different destinations, especially when the planning includes another person that adds another state to the mix.

 

OldBill

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Pennsylvania just put WY on the travel advisory list. CT,NY,NJ will likely follow, amongst others.
WY on PA Travel Advisory

So, less people from safer states will visit WY. That increases the % of visitors from highly infected states, possibly leading to even greater infection.

I am still going as I can quarantine on return. Few others can. Hope they get it under control in the next few weeks, but without mandating a quarantine on visitors from highly infected states (or proof of recent COVID (-) test) it's difficult to see how.

Jackson just tripled the number of cases last week. Not surprisingly, corresponding with the area of most tourists.
Jackson COVID Triples
 

Bob

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More tourists will have a big increase in cases in recreational areas....
Yellowstone front country is packed, island park is packed.... Everyone coming in and brings it in...they have to buy food and gas.... They don't care , they will go home......
 

swmalone

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the shuttle busses in Zion are not packed at all. They only allow 33 people total, which is the main bus with driver plus the addition. 80% of the seats are taken out. If I feel comfortable taking the shuttle, then it is now. About 75%-85% of visitors wear a mask on the bus. You can only board the shuttle via a specific 1-hour window, there are no lines to wait for the shuttle at the VC. My colleagues are super strict and let only the ones on the bus that have a timed ticket for the one hour window that on your ticket.
I really like the shuttle situation as it is right now and I wish we would keep that way forever. I tested the shuttle last Friday and it was so relaxed.

I would be more worried about St. George, barely anyone wears a mask and we finally have a mask mandate for some of the stores. It's much safer in Zion than it is in St. George.
How is the shuttle working for the stops within the park heading back towards the visitor center? I like that they are limiting the people and that the majority are wearing masks. My wife and I plan to spend most of our time in Zion, I think my in-laws plan to spend time in St. George golfing.
 

MikeM

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I've also heard from multiple sources that the Parks are not enforcing CDC guidelines. Many of those 2-3 million visitors are coming from regions with high infection rates. I wish the best for my Wyoming friends.
I realize your comment above is probably specific to the Parks in Wyoming (Yellowstone and Grand Teton) but I just returned from a trip in Glacier this past weekend. I can say that from what I saw, it seemed that GNP is doing a good job of distancing people, at least at the two places we visited. Lake McDonald Lodge does not allow anyone in the lodge without a reservation, the gift shop is closed, masks are required, the restaurant is closed, and they ask that you not loiter around the lobby. Also at Sperry Chalet, dining times are staggered to allow more distancing in the dining room, masks are required, and they also won't allow people in without a reservation. All in all, I was pleasantly surprised with how proactive they seemed to be with distancing rules, although it was certainly eerie to walk around places that are usually very crowded and not see many people around.
 

OldBill

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Encouraging to know that it's not nationwide. Most of what I've gathered are from comments on TripAdvisor of those visiting through the South Entrance and in Jackson. Several comments about masks being ignored inside various stores inside the park.
 

Yvonne

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How is the shuttle working for the stops within the park heading back towards the visitor center? I like that they are limiting the people and that the majority are wearing masks. My wife and I plan to spend most of our time in Zion, I think my in-laws plan to spend time in St. George golfing.
Every stop has a ranger controlling the lines. Actually, there are no lines. Usually a hand full of people waiting at the stops, but socially distanced and wearing masks. Ranger checking your tickets. I worked the lines at the VC the other day guiding people to the buses. Even at the visitor center it’s very relaxed


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

WasatchWill

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It would seem Nature and our forests are experiencing their own form of Covid and not escaping 2020 without their own catastrophes to recover from. From the earthquake that brought down the Baron Spire in Idaho to Hanging Lake and surrounding area in Colorado burning away now...what's next? Nevermind, I don't want to know.
 

ImNotDedYet

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It would seem Nature and our forests are experiencing their own form of Covid and not escaping 2020 without their own catastrophes to recover from. From the earthquake that brought down the Baron Spire in Idaho to Hanging Lake and surrounding area in Colorado burning away now...what's next? Nevermind, I don't want to know.
Hanging Lake is merely in the burn area, but an officer stated that often times areas in a burn area get skipped around by the fire. So any reports that the area has burned are premature at this point. I believe there's still 0 containment on that fire.

There is a different fire out west of there (where some of our members live I believe) that had grown to be our 5th largest in state history. And a new one up near State Forest State Park west of Ft Collins.

It's been horribly dry and horribly hot here this summer. Not much relief in sight either.
 

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