Maryland Outdoor Club

Membership > Rules

By participating in any MOC activities, you automatically agree to follow our rules. These rules are current as of Saturday, February 16, 2019 and are subject to change at any time with or without notice.

    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 Maryland Outdoor Club (Club) events/outings/activities (Event) - especially if the additional rules involve your safety. Events can be cancelled or modified at the discretion of the Club Representative (for lack of interest, inclement weather or having a personal conflict with the Event). The MOC 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 partway 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.

    Remember that you are representing the MOC while participating in any MOC 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 behavior not be permitting. Any member:
    1. Not being tolerant of another member's race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, disability, age, and gender will have their membership revoked without warning.
    2. Showing up to an event which they are not on the attendance list for will have their membership revoked without warning. The same goes for bringing dogs when dogs are not permitted, or bringing an unregistered guest. This is a liability issue AND WILL NOT BE TOLERATED FOR ANY REASON.
    3. With excessive behavioral complaints will have their membership revoked without warning.
    4. Falsifying information (or not providing information) on sign up will have their membership revoked without warning.
    5. With excessive "no show" reports for events which they are on the attendance list for will have their membership revoked without warning.
    6. Abusing the parks we use, or club-owned equipment, will have their membership revoked without warning.
    Note that we encourage all members to follow our Etiquette Guidelines at all times while participating in MOC events.

    • Complaint about a Volunteer/Event:
      All coordinators are volunteers. You are welcome to take part in their activities, but you do so at your own risk. Only written complaints against an Event Organizer or club volunteer will be considered. They may be addressed to the Event Director, Amy Lipsius, at The focus of the complaint policy is on improvement rather than discipline.
    • Complaint about another Club Member:
      The club strongly encourages members to deal with issues directly. If you are unable or unwilling to deal directly with the person (or persons) involved, please follow these guidelines:
      1. Complaints must be sent to the club President, Amy Lipsius, via e-mail. Please include date(s), time(s), event(s), behavior(s), what your reactions/responses were, and any corroborating evidence (ie. e-mails) or witnesses.
      2. Complaints absolutely must come first-hand by the victim. No second- or third-hand information will be acted on or considered unless it is in corroboration with the original complaint.
      3. Complaints must be serious. Harrassment (sexual or otherwise), violence, illegal activities, dangerous driving, etc are valid complaints. Talking non-stop during carpool is not.
      4. Complaints must be specific. Vague accusations of being "creepy" or "annoying" are not valid complaints. In the event of vague complaints, the club may choose to hold off action until more evidence is produced, or the perpetrator acts inappropriately again.
      5. Complaints must stem from club activities. Actions of members interacting outside of club events, or who interact with members on an event without being signed up for that event themselves will not be reprimanded through the club.
      6. Complaints must be timely. You must contact the club executive within 48 hours of the event to make your complaint.
    • Please Note:
      1. Although the club executive will be discreet (i.e. will not disclose your identity), they cannot guarantee anonymity because when communicating the nature of the complaint to the perpetrator, it may be possible for them to deduce who the complaint originated with.
      2. The club will not serve as a mediator for personal disputes.
      3. The club may choose not provide details on how the situation is handled, only that a warning was sent, etc.
      4. In the event of a first complaint against someone, they will likely receive a warning (unless the situation is very extreme). In the case that the club receives multiple complaints against the same person, they may be removed from the club.
      5. In the event of retaliation (ie. an attack via e-mail or phone) resulting from the complaint, the perpetrator may be suspended/expelled without question.

    Firearms/weapons are prohibited on all Events.

    Illegal drugs and substances of any kind are prohibited on all Events.

    The MOC encourages responsible drinking. Some Events may allow for the purchase and/or consumption of alcohol. We simply ask that you do not overdo it. By consuming alcohol, you give permission to allow Club Representatives to find alternative ways to transport you home/get you to 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 is prepared as far as carpool, etc. Your dog will need to be trained to stay with the group and/or be on a leash at all times, and must be able to get along with other dogs which may be attending the event.
    Hiking With Your Dog: All the United States national parks as well as the Maryland state parks in our vicinity allow dogs in the backcountry with the stipulation that they be physically restrained the entire time. MOC Policy is to follow the rules or laws of the area that we are in at all times, and the MOC and its Volunteers are not responsible for mishaps (or fines) that occur on an event due to the behavior of dogs (or their owners) who attend our events.
    Carpooling With Your Dog: Dog owners must be able/willing to transport their own dog to the event, and in the case where a willing driver is not available, the dog and owner will be turned away. Dog owners must pay an extra (full) portion of the carpool amount in the event that their dog prevents a person from using a spot in a vehicle (ie. because the dog is using the spot, or because packs/equipment must use a spot because the dog is using the area that would normally hold it). If a dog is small enough to comfortably ride at its owner's feet or on their lap, the extra payment for carpool does not apply.

    All pets and animals, besides dogs, are prohibited from all Activities unless express written permission is granted by a Club Representative. Participants with prohibited pets or animals during an Activity will be asked to remove them.

    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 or not. The MOC mainly caters to adults and does not want to be liable for a child's injuries on a risky Event.

    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.

    When participating in an Adventure Sport, 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. (Report any fallen trees or misuse of the trails to the club President, Amy Lipsius).
    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 them with water. Some areas have fire bans along the trail, so be sure to check before starting a fire.

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

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

Also note that all Club Participants MUST sign the MOC waiver before participation is allowed in an Event.

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