Updated April 21, 2020
Currently Idaho's state and federal lands and many other recreational areas are largely open for day use, even under the statewide stay at home order, but people are strongly encouraged to recreate responsibly by observing social distancing, limiting how far they travel, and reducing their impacts on any place they visit.
“People should get outside and get some fresh air,” Governor Little said. “It’s healthy and reduces the stress we’re all feeling these days. But it has to be done responsibly with people protecting their health and the health of the larger community.”
Recreate Responsibly Idaho (open the poster here) is a campaign developed with several state agencies and outdoor industry groups by our friend Steve Stuebner to improve the outdoor experience for everyone.
If you want to recreate, let's please do the following:
- Practice social distancing – staying six feet away from others not in your household.
- Enjoy the outdoors close to home whenever possible, following the statewide stay-home order and reducing the spread of COVID-19.
- Stay home if you’re sick to prevent putting others at risk.
- Check before traveling to a campground, a forest or a fishing hole if you decide to go somewhere. Contact information for recreational sites is available at https://coronavirus.idaho.gov/recreate-responsibly/. Most government campgrounds and many boat ramps are closed.
- Spread out – if a trailhead or boat launch is congested, find another place or come back during off-peak hours.
- Bring supplies (water, food, hand sanitizer, toilet paper) to be self-sufficient, ensuring you have a good time and avoiding contact with others in the community you visit.
- Prepare to pack out your trash as garbage service may be unavailable.
- Refrain from high-risk activities (climbing sketchy terrain, riding an expert-level trail) to ensure medical resources are available for the virus fight.
Our note on paddling: There are unique challenges when it come to paddling such as managing shuttles. Traveling to put ins and take outs can be a problem because many camp grounds are closed and other parking options are restricted. One option is to use a bike shuttle. We're keenly interested in any safe ideas our community comes up with during the Coronavirus outbreak.
We all want to have fun outdoors and stay safe!