Texas State Parks Reopen for Day-Use
AUSTIN—Texas State Parks will begin reopening for day-use only April 20 as part of a broader effort to begin reopening the state of Texas. Per Governor Abbott’s direction, new restrictions in effect include requiring visitors to wear face coverings and maintain a six-foot distance from individuals outside of their party, and prohibiting the gathering of groups larger than five.
“As we navigate through these challenging times, it is essential that outdoor experiences and opportunities are available for Texas families. We have been diligently working with our partners in local communities across the state to help safeguard our state park visitors, volunteers and staff when they return to Texas State Parks,” said Carter Smith, Executive Director of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD). “During the temporary closure, our State Parks team has been cleaning and sanitizing park facilities, addressing routine maintenance projects, and ensuring requisite safety protocols are in place to ensure visitors have the best possible experience.”
Due to limited staffing, weather conditions and continuing construction projects, some state parks will not be open at the current time. Park visitors should check the Texas State Parks Alert Map regularly for the latest information about the status of individual parks. The resumption of overnight camping will be announced to the public once a date has been determined.
TPWD recommends visitors continue to adhere to local, state and federal travel restrictions and other guidance for safety and social distancing before traveling. Additionally, visitors are required to pre-purchase and print day-use permits through the Texas State Parks Reservation System before traveling to a park. Day-use reservations can be made online at www.texasstateparks.org orby calling 512-389-8900.
Visitors planning on coming to a state park are encouraged to bring all necessary provisions, such as hand sanitizer and face masks, with them in order to help local businesses have enough goods to properly serve their communities during this time. This will also help park staff have necessary supplies available for all guests during their stay.
Anyone traveling to a Texas State Park should continue to follow Centers for Disease Control (CDC) public health recommendations and adhere to strict social distancing and cleanliness standards while in public spaces. Those traveling to parks in rural areas should remember possible limits on available resources and local health care capacities.
Operational changes still in effect at parks include the suspension of all transactions at parks, equipment rentals and in-person interpretive programs. All group-use facilities, visitor and nature centers, headquarters and other enclosed spaces where people congregate will also remain closed.
Texas State Park Passes can now be purchased online through the reservation system or over the phone by calling the Texas State Park Customer Service Line at 512-389-8900. For guidance troubleshooting issues with the reservation system or using Texas State Park Passes online, visit the reservation help page on the TPWD website.
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