This Saturday is Halloween, normally a day for spooky adventures, pumpkins, trick or treating, and costumes. But because of covid-19, things this year will be much milder. Wearing a face mask, social distancing, and avoiding crowded activities can make such a difference, especially since covid numbers are on the rise in so many states.

While this Halloween may be boring compared to other years, there are plenty of ways to have fun! In Washington, there are so many haunted hikes you can go on with your dog. Northwest Trek in Eatonville, WA has a socially distanced haunted hike. Plus, Washington Trail Association has a list of haunted hikes, including:

  • Iron Goat Trail near Steven’s Pass, where two trains were hit by an avalanche in 1910 and there are spooky tunnels; 6-mile roundtrip
  • Mine Shaft Trail in Cougar Mountain area (King County); 0.6-mile roundtrip
  • Silver Star Mountain in the Columbia Gorge area where there have been reported Sasquatch sightings; 4 miles roundtrip
  • Franklin Ghost Town in the Mount Rainier Area; 2.5-mile roundtrip
  • Northern State Hospital, Skagit County; 700-acre property, home to what was once a mental institution and now abandoned buildings

Other lower-risk activities include carving pumpkins with your family or housemates, decorating your home, having a virtual watch party of your favorite Halloween parties, or even a virtual costume contest! The great part about technology is that it’s easier than ever to connect with family and friends while maintaining a safe distance in your own homes.

Moderately risky activities will require you to wear a mask and maintain that six feet distance but there are some possible things you can do. These activities include: visiting a pumpkin patch or having an outdoor gathering of no more than 5 people outside your household.

Anything else, like traditional trick or treating and indoor haunted houses, are not permitted this year, as there’s a greater chance of Covid spreading.

Some tips to remember when you’re out and about this year (and not just on Halloween):

  1. A Halloween mask is not a substitute for a face covering. Your costume/outfit can and should include a proper face mask.
  2. The six feet distance is important, even when you’re outside!
  3. Wash your hands and use hand sanitizer.

While it’s disappointing that haunted houses, parties, and trick or treating are off the table this year, avoiding those activities can help curb the rise in Covid. The only scary things this year should be ghosts and horror stories, not a loved one getting sick!

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