Wilderness Connect, housed on the University of Montana campus, acknowledges that we are on the traditional lands of the Salish and Kalispel people, who have stewarded this land throughout many generations and are its past, present, and future caretakers.
Wilderness and COVID-19
Explore Wilderness In Person
Public lands, including wilderness areas, continue to remain open. When visiting wilderness or other outdoor public spaces, take these precautions and #RecreateResponsibly to ensure that your public lands stay open and accessible.
- VERIFY RESTRICTIONS: First, verify what federal, state, county or city government restrictions may be in place related to COVID-19 or increased visiter numbers. In most places, including Federal buildings and property, vaccinated individuals no longer need masks. Check with National Park Service, Forest Service, Fish and Wildlife Service or Bureau of Land Management office that manages the wilderness you want to visit to ensure you get the most current public health information available on restrictions on public lands. Due to increased visitation on public lands during the pandemic, new permit systems, parking caps, capacity limits and other restrictions may be in place.
- MAINTAIN SOCIAL DISTANCING: Follow the new rules for social distancing while on the trail that include maintaining 6 feet of distance between you and other people at all times.
- DON'T CONTRIBUTE TO 'WREAKREATION': Unprecedented numbers of people have been visiting public lands during the pandemic causing everything from crowding on trails to the creation of makeshift campsites to piles of human feces and trash. Be flexible with your outdoor plans so you can avoid popular areas by 1) choosing a different access point 2) getting outdoors at a less busy time of the day 3) practicing no-waste camping and 4) being well-educated about Leave No Trace techniques, specifically those related human waste.
Explore Wilderness Virtually
Virtual outdoor experiences can help feed your wild spirit when you're not outside. While at home, visit wilderness virtually:
- watch wilderness videos
- follow wilderness news, photos and videos on our Wilderness Connect Facebook page
- find your virtual park or tour 31 national parks (many with wilderness) on google earth
- 10 webcams for your nature fix
- view stunning photographs of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness
- take a video tour of southern Oregon and northern California
- connect to nature through livestreaming nature feeds
- try these park activities you can do from home
- walk the Appalachian Trail online (passes through 28 wildernesses)
- listen to nature sounds