Staying Safe in Parks and Recreating Responsibly
The CDC has noted that being physically active is one of the best ways to keep the mind and body healthy. In many areas, people can visit parks, trails, and open spaces as a way to relieve stress, get some fresh air and vitamin D, stay active, and safely connect with members of their household. Research the park you want to visit in advance to ensure an enjoyable and safe experience. Park rangers are on duty to uphold normal rules and regulations and assist visitors as needed.
Visitors are required to wear face masks in federal buildings including visitor centers, historic structures, and museums. When outdoors, face masks are required on NPS-administered lands when physical distance cannot be maintained.
For the health and safety of others, please choose another time to visit a park if:
- You are experiencing COVID-like symptomssuch as a dry cough, fever, difficulty breathing, and/or loss of taste or smell.
- You had close contact with someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 in the last 14 days.
- You are self-isolating or self-quarantining because you may have been exposed to a person with COVID-19 or are worried that you may be sick with COVID-19.
Protecting Our Employees
Employees, volunteers, partners, and contractors are required to wear face masks while in federal buildings and on federal lands. The NPS issues protective equipment to employees performing critical functions like visitor and resource protection, EMS, and facility maintenance, among others. Following CDC guidance, park staff clean and maintain facilities to safeguard employee and public health and safety. We follow the latest CDC guidance for risk assessment, disease prevention, and protection of public spaces and workplaces.
We track confirmed employee cases of COVID-19 and recovery. However, we will only provide public information where an employee presented an exposure risk to the public based on CDC guidance. In addition, where employees may have exposed any of their colleagues, the NPS Office of Public Health will work with state, tribal, or local authorities and the impacted employees to follow proper public health procedures to keep one another safe.
Please check with individual parks for specific details about park operations.
Some NPS programs may have changed their operations as well (e.g., extended due dates for reporting or applications, shortened hours of operation, changed contact information, etc.). Please check with the program for details. If you are an operational partner of the NPS (e.g., concessioner, cooperating association, or philanthropic organization), visit the Public Health Information for the Park Partner Community page.