Was it inevitable?
Maybe. With so many businesses and other venues closed during the coronavirus pandemic, people started flocking to outdoor sites and trailheads to relieve some “cabin fever.”
Some took social distancing and “safe and healthy” precautions seriously. Others didn’t.
Unfortunately, the predictable result of irresponsible behavior by some had repercussions for all when officials started closing public parks and trails to help slow the spread of the virus.
COVID 19 update (3-24-20): STATE PARKS ARE CLOSED
The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission and the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife announced the temporary closure of all state-managed parks, wildlife areas, and water-access areas for at least two weeks starting Wednesday, March 25. The closure is in response to Gov. Inslee’s “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order issued on March 23 to combat COVID-19.
The closures will last through April 30.
National parks are also affected. Per the U S. National Park Service:
2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Response
The National Park Service is modifying its operations on a park-by-park basis in accordance with the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state and local public health authorities. While most facilities and events are closed or canceled, many of our outdoor spaces remain accessible to the public. Before visiting, please check with individual parks regarding changes to park operations. If you choose to visit a national park, please ensure that you follow CDC and state and local guidelines to prevent the spread of infectious diseases and practice Leave No Trace principles. Updates about the NPS response, including safety information, are posted on www.nps.gov/coronavirus.
For a list of national parks that are closed as of this writing, click here.
Much of Mount Rainer National Park is closed. For details, click here.
Have no fear. Help for the homebound Rainier hiker is on the way!
Here are 7 ways to enjoy Mount Rainier National Park from home:
- Explore the park from home through the newly released Mount Rainier National Park Virtual Tour! This interactive map reveals many wonders of this iconic park.
- Check the webcams for a mountain fix.
- Follow @MountRainierNPS on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, and YouTube.
- Explore the Mount Rainier National Park website.
- Take in some amazing views through 360 video.
- Find your favorite photos in our online galleries on the website and Flickr.
- And, finally, share and search other #ShareMyRainier experiences on social media.
Additionally, via the Mount Rainier web site:
The health and safety of our visitors, employees, volunteers, and partners at Mount Rainier National Park is our number one priority. The NPS is taking extraordinary steps to implement the latest guidance from state and local authorities, which support the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention’s (CDC) efforts to promote social distancing and slow the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
The NPS urges visitors to do their part when visiting a park and to follow CDC guidance to prevent the spread of infectious diseases by maintaining a safe distance between yourself and other groups; washing your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; avoiding touching your eyes, nose, and mouth; covering your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze; and most importantly, staying home if you feel sick.
For more information, call (360) 569-2211 or email.
How are you enjoying the outdoors from home these days?