National forest trailheads and day use areas will reopen beginning Friday

U.S. Forest Service photo.

Most trailheads and day use areas in the Okanogan-Wenatchee Forest will reopen Friday, the Forest Service announced Tuesday.

But campgrounds will not.

Forest Supervisor Kristin Bail said it is part of a phased reopening of recreation sites in the forest.

Citing Gov. Jay Inslee’s Stay Home, Stay Healthy order, most snow parks, restrooms, picnic areas and trailheads were closed March 27, though most of the forest itself remained open.

Still, access to restrooms, garbage service and water facilities will be limited.

The Forest Service said campgrounds will remain closed until sometime in June so forest staff and concessionaires can prepare them for operation.

“Protecting the health and safety of our employees, volunteers, partners, recreation providers, and the public is always our number one priority,” Bail said. “We want to make sure that personnel have the appropriate personal protective equipment so they can safely open and operate these facilities.”

Heavily used sites like Boulder Cave and day use sites within campgrounds with no separate access will remain closed until campgrounds reopen.