Posted Saturday, June 20th, 2020
Encourages Health and Safety Measures
The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner has announced that tent-style camping will begin in 12 state parks, forests and recreation areas on Monday (June 22).
To account for social distancing requirements and staffing necessary to clean and maintain indoor facilities, camping will be limited to tent-style camping. All other forms of overnight use including cabins, shelters, group cabins, wilderness campsites, primitive campsites, and group campsites will remain closed.
The re-opening will be consistent with Governor Murphy’s COVID-19 public health protection goals that stress social distancing and wearing of masks.
“We are pleased to resume camping, knowing how important these activities are to so many people,” said DEP Commissioner Catherine McCabe, who stressed the importance of maintaining proper six-foot social distancing and wearing face coverings.
Under Governor’s Executive Order 148, the DEP will reopen camping at 14 state-run areas on Monday:
North: High Point State Park, Jenny Jump State Forest, Spruce Run Recreation Area, Stokes State Forest and Worthington State Forest;
Central: Allaire State Park and Cheesequake State Park;
South: Bass River State Forest, Belleplain State Forest, Brendan Byrne State Forest, Parvin State Park and Wharton State Forest.
Opening June 29: Swartswood State Park and Stephens State Forest in the northern part of the state.
The DEP has taken into account the physical layouts of each park in determining the percentage of campsites to reopen. At most areas, at least 50 percent of sites will be open. All sites will be open at High Point and Jenny Jump.
Rigorous cleaning protocols for restrooms, shower facilities and other facilities and common areas will be implemented, following guidelines set by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the New Jersey Department of Health. In addition, barriers are being installed to limit contact between staff and visitors.
Campground guests will be encouraged by signage to wear a mask when in public and in indoor spaces such as gatehouses and restrooms. They must maintain a six-foot distance from other individuals that are not immediate family members, caretakers, household members, or partners.
Visitors are encouraged to make reservations, cancellations and payments via electronic or telephone reservation systems to limit physical interactions by visiting www.njportal.com/DEP/NJOutdoors.The option to pay by cash remains available.