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New changes for Iowa state parks due to COVID-19; campgrounds close

  • 4/7/2020 2:05:00 PM
  • View Count 18496
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Dear Visitors,

With the latest closures by Governor Reynolds to help stop the spread of COVID-19 in Iowa, we are announcing new changes to park operations, including the closing of campgrounds for recreational use through April 30, 2020.

Iowa State Parks are open for day-use only. The areas of state parks that are still open include: roads and trails; lakes, rivers and streams including shorelines, boat ramps and access points; and open spaces such as grassy areas.

Our highest priority is the health and well-being of our visitors, volunteers and employees. Please remember to be careful and responsible when visiting state parks:

  • Keep 6 feet distances between you and other park visitors.
  • Avoid popular areas where people may congregate such as scenic overlooks, buildings, busy trails, etc.
  • Bring your own hand sanitizer and soap, and use frequently.
  • Stay home if you have been sick in the last two weeks. Cover coughs and sneezes.

The following facilities are currently closed in state parks: 

  • Bathrooms including pit latrines and port-a-potties. No soap or sanitizer will be available in the park.
  • Campgrounds and group/youth camps for recreational use. 
  • Playgrounds
  • Cabins
  • Lodges and shelters
  • Visitor centers and museums

All programs and events at state parks are cancelled or postponed through at least April 30, 2020. Watch for updates at

We are monitoring the situation. As conditions change, so may our policies on park visitation and overnight stays. We will keep you informed of any changes moving forward.

If you have reservations for the month of May and feel cancelling your stay is the safest choice, we will waive the cancellation fee for visits (cabins, campsites, lodges, shelters) with arrival dates through May 31, 2020. A transaction fee of $4.00 ($6.00 for reservations originally made by phone) will still apply. To cancel your May reservation, call (877) 427-2757.

Thank you for your patience and flexibility. We appreciate your support of Iowa state parks as we all work together to keep each other safe. For more information about COVID-19, please visit the Iowa Department of Public Health website: