(BEDFORD) – The USDA Forest Service is working hard to reopen developed campgrounds, day-use, and rental facilities for the busy summer season.
A specific opening date is undetermined, but it is projected to be after June 1, 2020, depending on the status of COVID-19 impacts.
Until then, developed campgrounds, horse camps, toilet facilities, day-use areas, Hickory Ridge Lookout Tower, and rentals remain temporarily closed.
Recreation areas and campgrounds may not be immediately open and available for use. Expect forest closures and modified operations to happen on a case-by-case basis. Please check the Hoosier National Forest website and Facebook regularly for up to date change.
“We are looking forward to opening these sites for public use and enjoyment. Camping and recreating on the Hoosier National Forest is an activity individuals and families look forward to experiencing every summer,” stated Mike Chaveas, Hoosier National Forest Supervisor. “While we understand there may be some excitement from the public to return to beloved recreation areas, please continue to follow local, state, and federal guidelines on staying safe and preventing the spread of COVID-19.”
Those with existing reservations through Recreation.gov will be notified via email and/or text message if there are any changes.
Trails, trailheads, and dispersed camping remain open. When dispersed camping, please be sure to maintain a 100-foot distance from trails or water sources. Avoid congregating at trailheads and/or parking areas and refrain from gathering in groups of 10 or more. If parking areas or trails are crowded, consider another recreation site for your safety and the protection of your public lands.
Visitors are asked to stay as local as possible when choosing a site to visit and to pack out everything they bring, especially trash. Visitors are also urged to take the precautions recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) along with local health and safety guidance.
For tips from the CDC on preventing illnesses like the coronavirus, go to: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/prevention.html.
Responsible recreation will help expand access to facilities, services. and other opportunities. Certain services may still be unavailable, so visitors are asked to plan accordingly and to remain flexible.
Contact information for the Hoosier National Forest is available online at https://www.fs.usda.gov/hoosier.