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Many state parks are open again; what to know if you go

Also, state parks admission is free the weekend of June 6-7, 2020.

Washington State Parks and recreation lands will begin to reopen for day use on Tuesday, May 5, after weeks being closed because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Not all parks, wildlife areas, recreation lands and boat launches will open at the same time, so check before you go. Here is the latest list from the state. In addition some open parks will have limited parking.

Some remote areas will stay closed because staff haven’t had time to get to them. Other places may stay closed because of concerns about overcrowding or impacts on neighboring rural communities.

Among places that are open, visitor centers will be closed, and bathrooms may be closed also, so come prepared for that.

The state has issued the following:

Guidelines for responsible recreation in the outdoors  

Before you go 

  • Check what’s open. While many state-managed land destinations are open for day use, other local, tribal and federal land may still be closed. 
  • Opt for day trips close to home. Overnight stays are not permitted.
  • Stay with immediate household members only. Recreation with those outside of your household creates new avenues for virus transmission.
  • Come prepared. Visitors may find reduced or limited restroom services as staff begin the process to reopen facilities at wildlife areas and water access sites.  You are advised to bring your own soap, water, hand sanitizer and toilet paper, as well as a mask or bandana to cover your nose and mouth.
  • Enjoy the outdoors when healthy. If you have symptoms of fever, coughing or shortness of breath, save your outdoor adventure for another day.  

When you get there  

  • Avoid crowds. Be prepared to go somewhere else or come back another time if your destination looks crowded. 
  • Practice physical distancing. Keep six feet between you and those outside your immediate household. Launch one boat at a time to give others enough space to launch safely. Leave at least one parking space between your vehicle and the vehicle next to you. Trailer your boat in the same way. 
  • Wash your hands often. Keep up on personal hygiene and bring your own water, soap and hand sanitizer with you.  
  • Pack out what you pack in. Take any garbage with you, including disposable gloves and masks. 

For more details on state parks: parks.state.wa.us/COVID19

On Department of Fish and Wildlife lands: wa.gov/about/covid-19-updates

On Department of Natural Resources lands: dnr.wa.gov/open

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