LINCOLN, Neb. (KCAU) – The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission will be opening more camping opportunities in state park areas.
Starting June 4, all previous temporary restrictions on recreational vehicle and tent camping will be lifted. They will also be opening designated beaches and swimming areas.
All reservation-only campsites and first-come campsites, other than at Mormon Island State Recreation Area (SRA) and Danish Alps, will be available to all camping units, including RV’s camping trailers, and tents.
Mormon Island and Danish Alps SRAs will remain closed to overnight camping due to high COVID-19 incidence in those communities.
Camp guests will be able to make reservations online for previously reservable sites or enjoy first-come-first-serve camping across the state.
Wildlife management areas remain open for camping.
Nebraska Game and Parks would like to remind park guests to continue practicing social distancing to ensure compliance with the state’s Directed Health Measures (DHM’s) during the COVID-19 health situation.
“With high demand for camping and outdoor recreational opportunities, and changes in the state’s Directed Health Measures, we are pleased to restore camping opportunities and allow guests to participate in activities they love – making memories in our parks. We appreciate everyone’s enthusiasm and patience during these times we have worked to provide opportunities, while at the same time helping to protect the health of the public and our staff.”Nebraska Game and Parks Director Jim Douglas
The following measures will go into effect on June 4:
- Game and Parks will return to the traditional format of combination advance reservation and first-come-first-serve camping across the state. The park areas that will accommodate advance reservations for up to 50% of available campsites are listed on the agency’s website.
- To provide for more opportunities for campers, the maximum length of stay will be seven days. Park offices remain closed at this time. Campers must pay for reserved sites online or for first-come-first-serve sites through iron rangers.
- Shower houses and modern restrooms will open. Guests should bring soap or disinfecting wipes as the availability of sanitation products is limited nationally.
- Outdoor playgrounds will open but guests should bring their own hand sanitizer.
- Designated beaches and designated swimming areas will open.
“We are thrilled at the prospect of more people enjoying our parks, but it is critical that they recreate responsibility,” Parks Division Administrator Jim Swenson said. “Responsible recreation is very important, and guests need to continue to practice social distancing, follow all posted rules, keep group sizes small, and practice good personal hygiene.”
Folks visiting Nebraska state parks should follow the guidelines listed below to recreate responsibly:
- Maintain a six-foot distance between other guests.
- Engage in recreational activities only with members of your household.
- Stick to low-risk activities to reduce stress on local emergency response and health care systems.
- Minimize travel distance from home. If your intended location is congested, come back at another time or move to a nearby, less-crowded site.
- Pack and use hand sanitizer often.
- Avoid high-touch areas. Clean public surfaces, such as boat dock handrails and fish cleaning stations, with disinfecting wipes before use.
- If boating, do not congregate at boat ramps, boat docks, and beach areas.
- If you are sick or have been exposed to someone who has COVID-19, stay home.
- Leave no trace: Pack out everything you bring with you.
All regulations and license options remain unchanged.
Park guests are encouraged to buy state park fishing permits ahead of time by clicking here, or at a vendor. If purchasing a permit online, print the permit out and carry it along.