State park day-use guide during COVID-19

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May 6, 2021

Day-use Guide

See our Camping Guide, too

Day-use Parking Permit Extension Information

We’re excited to welcome you to state parks! The ongoing pandemic means operations continue to look different from what you’re used to. The virus is still spreading in Oregon, and we need your help to ensure parks can remain open.

The best way to help is Prepare + Care. Prepare before your trip, then care while in a park. If you're camping at a park too, check out our camping during COVID-19 guide so you know what to expect. 

Prepare

Stay home if you feel sick
If you’re not feeling well, the best way to get better (and to protect the health of others) is to stay home and rest up. Health experts recommend you stay home for 10 days following a fever or other symptoms. The parks will still be here for you when you feel better.

Check ahead for service reductions
Many indoor attractions, such as lighthouses, museums, and visitor centers remain closed. Open visitor centers will have occupancy limits and face covering requirements that follow Oregon Health Authority guidelines. Check our Park Status Map for updates. 

If you’re unsure, call our park info line weekdays 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. at 800-551-6949. 

Be flexible
Outdoor spaces have become even more crowded during the pandemic, since so many other favorite pastimes are limited or closed. Plan to visit early or late in the day, and make a “Plan B” in case your first-choice park is too crowded to safely enjoy. 

Pack what you need at home

Bring the essentials—water, snacks, face coverings, sunscreen, hand sanitizer, etc.—so you reduce the stops along the way to your destination, thereby reducing the number of people with whom you come in contact.

Some services and rentals parks typically offer won't be available. Make sure you pack out everything you bring in. 

 

Care

If the park looks very crowded, consider heading elsewhere
If you show up to a park and the parking lot is slammed with cars and people, consider falling back on your Plan B park or activity. If you decide to stay, please don’t get creative with parking; only use designated parking areas. Parking on road shoulders is dangerous, and any vehicles parked illegally can be towed.

Choose safe or low-key activities
Take it easy during your visit; now is not the time to try a brand-new activity or long, difficult hike. A medical emergency would strain the limited resources of our rural community neighbors.

Maintain physical distance from others
Follow OHA guidelines and stay at least 6 feet away from other visitors who aren’t your family. This means taking turns using restrooms, stepping off trails to let others pass (if safe to do so), and not lingering at congested areas like parking lots or trailheads.

Wear your face covering around others
Even if vaccinated, you should continue to wear a mask in congested outdoor areas where 6' distance cannot be maintained,  like parking lots, trailheads and crowded trails. The Oregon Health Authority advises that small, outdoor gatherings with fully vaccinated friends and family are safe without masks. 

Know which facilities are open for visitor use
Check for posted signs on facilities; if it says “closed,” it means closed. Some popular facilities, like lighthouses and visitor centers, may be closed outright.

Remember that all normal park rules still apply
Please follow all other established park rules. Read our Statewide FAQ if you need a refresher. 

Some parks are open for day-use and camping, with reduced services. Check the Park Status Map and FAQ for details.