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Lake Roosevelt access and services increasing

The Lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area, which includes Spring Canyon, is increasing recreational access and services, such as camping and vault restrooms, beginning July 1. 

The National Park Service, which manages the LRNRA, says it’s following guidance from the White House, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and state and local public health authorities in this increase of services. 

“Approximately 61% of our visitors come from Spokane, King, and Snohomish counties (410,000 people),” a June 22 press release states. “While some counties surrounding Lake Roosevelt have entered Phase 3 (of the state of Washington’s Safe Start recovery plan), King County moved into Phase 2 on Friday, June 19. With the change in King County’s status, Lake Roosevelt is now able to move into Phase 2 of Washington State’s Safe Start Reopening Plan. During Phase 2 gathering and outdoor recreation sizes are limited to no more than 5 people outside your household.”

Beginning July 1, the park will reopen access to:

• All NPS-operated boat-in campgrounds and associated restrooms. Restrooms will not be cleaned on a daily basis and floating restrooms will remain closed. Bring your own hand sanitizer.

• By reservation only: Spring Canyon, Fort Spokane, and Kettle Falls campgrounds. The number of campsites available through the reservation system at these campgrounds has been expanded. Group campsites will remain closed until further notice in compliance with Washington State Phase 2 gathering restriction. 

• Reservations through reopened June 23 for these three campgrounds. All campers must have a valid reservation to camp. There will be no first-come, first-served allowed at this time.

As additional campgrounds are added to the reservation system, they will be opened for camping.

Day use areas and boat launches, including at Spring Canyon, continue to be open. 

“Vault toilets will be available in these day-use areas,” the release says, but later says that “Comfort Stations (flush toilet facilities)” will remain closed. 

That means the only bathroom available for use at Spring Canyon is the vault toilet near the boat launch. 

Fish cleaning stations and garbage collection also remain unavailable. 

 “If you pack it in, pack it out,” the release says. 

“Please be aware that the opening date is subject to change,” NPS cautioned. “The park continues to monitor the Coronavirus pandemic and work closely with state and local public health officials. Campground operations may change at any time throughout the summer due to required COVID-19 mitigations.

“While these areas are accessible for visitors to enjoy, a return to full operations will continue to be phased and services will be limited. When recreating, the public should follow state health orders, practice Leave No Trace principles, avoid crowding and avoid high-risk outdoor activities.” 


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