(Press Release, April 16, 2020)

Governor Brad Little (Official Photo)

Boise, Idaho – Outdoor recreation remains a great way for Idahoans to take care of their physical, mental, and emotional health during the coronavirus situation, but Governor Brad Little and natural resource managers urge everyone to protect their health and the welfare of others while hiking, biking, fishing or doing other activities.

Recreate Responsibly Idaho is new campaign that offers guidelines for Idahoans who want to recreate outdoors.  Information about outdoor recreation opportunities and other information is available at https://coronavirus.idaho.gov/recreate-responsibly/.

Those who want to recreate outdoors should consider carefully before traveling outside of their home county while the statewide stay-home order is in place.

All of us must work to keep areas open for recreation during the COVID-19 crisis.  By following the Recreate Responsibly Idaho guidelines, we can minimize closures resulting from people overcrowding areas and ignoring social distancing.

State and federal lands and many other recreational areas are largely open for day use, even under the Governor’s statewide stay-home order, but people must 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 is a campaign to improve the outdoor experience for everyone, backed by Governor Little, Idaho and federal resource agencies, and outdoor industry groups.

If you want to recreate, please:

– 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

Have fun outdoors and stay safe!

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