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Face Masks Will Now Be Required in All National Parks

Masks must be worn inside all facilities managed by the National Park Service, as well as on crowded or narrow trails when social distancing is not possible.

Thinking of visiting Crater Lake, the John Day Fossil Beds or any other national parkland in the next few months? Better pack a mask.

The National Park Service announced this week that it will be requiring masks on all of its lands, in accordance with President Joe Biden's executive order requiring masks to be worn in federal buildings.

Masks must be worn inside all facilities managed by the NPS, by guests and employees, as well as on crowded or narrow trails when social distancing is not possible.

"Working with public health officials and following the latest science and guidance, we can make national parks safer for employees, visitors and partners," NPS deputy director Shawn Benge said in a statement. "We will continue to evaluate operations and make appropriate modifications to visitor services as needed."

Those trails can get crowded: The Oregonian reported this morning that Crater Lake National Park broke several monthly records for visitors in 2020, as Oregonians with cabin fever sought a pandemic escape.