Your outdoor recreation options are becoming increasingly limited—campgrounds and park visitor centers are closing across the state.
Even though the sunny conditions have been practically begging everyone to get out of their homes, three agencies have pulled the plug on overnight stays in state forests to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19.
"State park, forest, and wildlife area camping areas are built into relatively small areas by design," reads a post on the Oregon State Parks website. "Maintaining social distance is difficult. Working with fewer staff and volunteers is becoming a reality, making it difficult to maintain proper cleaning procedures."
The agencies also cited overnight travel as a potential burden to medical resources and grocers in rural areas.
If you have reservations through April 2, those will still be honored. But after that, all state park stays through May 8 will be canceled and site fees refunded.
In addition, the Oregon Department of Forestry, which maintains campgrounds in the Clatsop, Santiam and Tillamook state forests, is closing year-round campgrounds starting March 23. Restrooms at those sites are also temporarily locked. There is no target reopening date. The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife is prohibiting camping in its wildlife areas, effective March 22. And the Bureau of Land Management Oregon-Washington is temporarily restricting public access to some visitor centers and public rooms in both states.
Daytime visits are still encouraged and trails remain open, but keep in mind that visitors centers—like those at Tryon Creek State Natural Area, L.L. Stub Stewart State Park and the Vista House at Crown Point—are all shuttered for now.
And at the coast, a popular destination for families on spring break this time of year, service will be similarly suspended at places like the Depoe Bay Whale Watching Center and Newport's Yaquina Bay Lighthouse.
You can find a full list of closures here.