Utilize the Natural Outdoor Beauty of Utah to Combat Worry Over COVID-19


Photo by Jamie Swank

Amid the closures, restrictions and other precautions set in place in order to protect the community from the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), it is easy for many to feel isolated and discouraged. However, living in an area such as the Castle Valley means many outdoor opportunities for all.

Public Parks
At this time, none of the public parks have been closed. Social distancing is encouraged, but children and families are still invited to utilize the playground or enjoy a picnic and the fresh air.

Fresh air can also be found on the various walking, biking and motor vehicle trails located throughout Carbon and Emery counties. With the approach of the warmer weather, now is the perfect time to reacquaint with the surrounding natural beauty.

Outdoor Museums
Though the museums and the libraries are temporarily closed for the public’s safety, outdoor adventuring areas such as Nine Mile Canyon, the San Rafael Swell and more are open and ready for the public to explore and find new favorite historical marks.

The Millsite and Carbon Country Club golf courses offer the perfect opportunity to learn, or hone, a great golf swing. To schedule a tee time, call Millsite at (435) 384-2887 or the Carbon Country Club at (435) 637-2388.

Fishing holes are ripe with the opportunity to nab the catch of the day. For an interactive report on fishing in Utah, please click here. 

Shed Hunting
The time is also perfect for shed hunting; however, gatherers should note that from Feb. 1 to April 15, you must have an antler-gathering certificate on your person while collecting shed antlers or horns. Hopeful hunters can take the course online to secure a certificate by clicking here. The Division of Wildlife Resources reminds shed hunters should also remember that the antler-gathering certificate does not authorize you to trespass on closed areas or private lands to collect sheds.

The movie theaters, restaurants and gyms are not physically allowing patrons while all combats the spread of COVID-19, making this a great opportunity to work up a sweat around the local neighborhoods or find a bench to take a moment for relaxation. The Helper, Price and Huntington walkways remain open but visitors are encouraged to practice social distancing.

Public Lands
During this time, community members can enjoy public lands. The Bureau of Land Management recently announced that it will temporarily suspend the collection of all entrance fees until further notice. As a result, site-specific standard amenity and day-use fees at BLM recreation sites and areas will be waived for the foreseeable future. Other fees, such as overnight camping, cabin rentals, group day use and use of special areas, will remain in effect.

State Parks
At this time, Utah State Parks remain open to the public. However, events scheduled through April 15 have been canceled. Although these events have been canceled, all state parks and recreation areas managed by the Division remain open during their operating hours. Visitors are encouraged to consult the Utah State Park’s official COVID-19 webpage for information on parks that have had facilities impacts, such as campground or visitor center closures.


At the present time, confirmed COVID-19 cases in Utah continue to rise, with the positive cases as of Monday reaching 257. Social distancing is important to utilize for the safety of all, but hope should not be lost.


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