Recreation Resources

Jim Davis   Website

Last updated: October 7, 2020

The spread of Covid-19 created a widespread closure of public lands and recreational facilities across the country. Here’s a summary of the current closures in place for land management agencies in Oregon’s high desert.

As outdoor spaces reopen, please be sure to be thoughtful and recreate responsibly by continuing to keep social distancing, wash your hands vigorously and frequently, and knowing what’s open and closed before you head out. For additional guidance, see

Note: As of July 1, 2020, Oregon state is requiring people ages 12 and older in Oregon to don a mask whenever they’re in a public indoor space. As of July 15, face coverings are also required in outdoor public spaces when social distancing of at least 6 feet is not possible.

As we are in fire season, please be mindful of fire bans. Open flame fires, including charcoal grills, are prohibited in most areas. Avoid all spark-producing activities including driving over dry vegetation. Use this map of fire restrictions to zoom in on your destination and check restrictions before you head out. Check for active fires and area closures from the following sources. Oregon Department of Forestry updates a map of active fires in the state, and InciWeb tracks large fires nationally. Central Oregon Fire Info provides detailed updates on local fires. Interagency dispatch centers in Burns, Vale, and Lakeview keep track of fires of all sizes in southeastern Oregon.

Due to fire closures, you may need to modify recreation plans. Fires have caused highway closures of OR 22 and OR 242 among others, check this link for current road conditions. Some forest areas are also under closure orders, linked in their respective sections below, please support firefighting and recovery operations by not traveling into closure areas.


Sage Steppes

Sage Steppes


South Fork Crooked River and Birds

South Fork Crooked River and Birds


Durlin Hicock, Alice Elshoff Award winner

Durlin Hicock, Alice Elshoff Award winner

“Protecting public land is part of my spiritual being. It’s central to my identity to be in wilderness and to see it protected.” Durlin is proud to protect public lands for future generations, saying, “The highlight of my childhood was our family’s weekend outdoor trips. I look forward to my grandchildren having similar experiences outside in their lifetimes, and it wouldn’t be possible without ONDA.”

Federal Lands

Bureau of Land Management
Reopening Summary

With the lifting of public health and safety restrictions enacted by local, county and state officials, the BLM is beginning phased reopening. Many campgrounds, restrooms and day-use facilities (i.e. locations with picnic areas and/or restrooms) are reopened. Some BLM District and Field Offices have restored access with limited in-person services. Contact districts for specific information.

Prineville District: Campgrounds will re-open to overnight use in the North Barr, Buckhorn, Steelhead Falls, Big Bend, Palisades, Chimney Rock, Post Pile, Cobble Rock, Castle Rock, Stillwater, and Lone Pine locations.

Burns District: Page Springs Campground at the base of Steens Mountain and Chickahominy Reservoir Campground near Riley are open. Steens Mountain Loop Road is open as are all campgrounds on the mountain.

National Forests
Reopening Summary

Most developed sites in Region 6 have reopened, including many campgrounds. Check interactive map and recreation reports for specific site information and contact district offices for detailed information.

Fremont-Winema Crane Fire closure order

Fremont-Winema Brattain Fire closure order

Fremont-Winema Two Four Two Fire closure order

Deschutes NF closure areas


Reopening Summary

Camp Hart Mountain and Hot Springs Campgrounds are open. Refuge lands are open.

Malheur Refuge visitor’s center, store, and museum are closed. Refuge lands, trails, and bathrooms are open.

Reopening Summary

Crater Lake: Most roads and trails are open, check current conditions link for most updated status. The Visitor Centers are closed, but restrooms and some services are open.

John Day Fossil Beds:

Picnic areas and trails are open at the Clarno, Sheep Rock, and Painted Hills Units.

The Thomas Condon Paleontology and Visitor Center and Painted Hills Contact station remain closed.

Newbury Volcanic:

Beginning Monday, June 15, 2020 most campgrounds within the Newberry National Volcanic Monument will open.  Opening campgrounds include  East Lake and Little Crater.

Lava Lands Visitor Center remains closed.

Tribal Lands

Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs
Closure Summary

All tribal conservation areas are closed, including Pine Creek Conservation Area.

State Lands

Reopening Summary

Most parks are now open to day use, check the interactive map for use restrictions and contact parks directly. Many campgrounds have opened as well, although services may be reduced, check the interactive map for details. Most cabins, yurts, hiker/biker sites, and group facilities remain closed.

Fire closures

Oregon Fish and Wildlife
Reopening Summary

ODFW Wildlife Areas are open for day use and camping (where allowed). Offices and fish hatcheries remain closed to the public. Hunting and fishing in Oregon is open to nonresidents. Crabbing is open to nonresidents from Cape Falcon south. Clamming remains closed to nonresidents for the entire coast.

Wildlife areas that allow camping reopened to camping include:

  • Bridge Creek Wildlife Area, Umatilla and Morrow counties
  • Lower Deschutes Wildlife Area, Wasco County
  • Philip W Schneider Wildlife Area, Grant County
  • Prineville Reservoir Wildlife Area, Crook County
  • Summer Lake Wildlife Area, Lake County
  • White River Wildlife Area, Wasco County

Central Oregon Parks

Bend Parks and Recreation
Reopening Summary

Parks and trails remain open with the social distancing rules in place. Park restrooms are open. Stake parks and pickleball, tennis, horseshoes and bocce ball courts are open. Playgrounds are now open. Off-leash dog areas, picnic shelters and restrooms remain open. Rivers are open for floating. Maintain social distancing while recreating.

Basketball courts are closed.

Air quality closures

Redmond Parks and Recreation
Reopening Summary

The Activity Center and Swim Center are open with limited hours and reservations required. Playgrounds, and sport courts are closed.  Parks and trails are open with social distancing rules.

Crook County Parks
Reopening Summary

Skate park, pickleball court, Ochoco Lake Crook County RV Park, and Haystack campground are open May 15. Playgrounds, picnic shelters, basketball courts, covered picnic shelters, pool and splash pad remain closed.


Reopening Summary

All launches and take-outs for the Lower Deschutes River are open as of May 21.

All dispersed and designated campgrounds along the Lower Deschutes will re-open for overnight use on the same date.

John Day River
Reopening Summary

All launches and take-outs for the John Day River are open as of May 21.

Reopening Summary

Ramp at BLM Spring Recreation site is open. Ramps in Hells Canyon National Recreation Area are open as of May 21.

Lower Owyhee River
Reopening Summary

Leslie Gulch boat ramp is open.