The Pacific Northwest National Scenic Trail passes through many different public and private lands. In partnership with local land managers and gateway communities, PNTA will aggregate the latest info regarding COVID-19 related closures that affect access to the PNT on this webpage. Please visit our blog for the latest COVID-19 updates about our work at the Pacific Northwest Trail Association.
The latest guidance recommends that all Americans should reduce travel, practice social distancing, wear face masks, and avoid social gatherings in groups. The PNTA urges visitors to follow the guidance of the CDC and local authorities to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and other infectious diseases.
Important: PNTA staff provide these updates to the best our ability. Due to rapidly changing nature of the crisis, we strongly recommend checking with the local land manager for the latest information at the links provided. Travelers to the Pacific Northwest should should take personal responsibility in complying with public health orders, verifying travel bookings, and exercising recommended safety protocols as new and changing restrictions are occurring daily.
Last updated: March 18th, 2021 10:00 am PT
Washington State Response:
- All Washington counties are currently in Stage 2 of the Safe-Start Plan
- Learn what’s open in Phase 2
- On Nov. 13, 2020, Gov. Jay Inslee issued a travel advisory that recommends people arriving in Washington from other states or countries, including returning Washington residents, should practice self-quarantine for 14 days after arrival
- As of Nov. 17, Gov. Inslee issued new guidelines for indoor gatherings with people outside the household
Olympic National Park:
- The backcountry permit system has changed for the 2021 season. All permits must be obtained online. Permit applications are accepted up to 6 months in advance. Learn more at this link.
- The coastal area of Olympic National Park at La Push (Second Beach and Third Beach) and Shi Shi Beach remain closed until further notice. These area closures include the parking lots, trails, and beaches.
- The Quileute Tribe has closed the Quileute Reservation to the general public until further notice.
- The Makah Tribe has closed the Makah Reservation, including the Shi Shi Beach Trailhead until further notice.
- The following park roads are closed at the park boundary: The Olympic Hot Springs Road and Whiskey Bend Road in the Elwha Valley are closed to vehicles at the Madison Falls parking area due to the washout of Olympic Hot Springs Road.
- Visit the Park’s website for current information on drive-in campground status.
North Cascades National Park:
- Backcountry permit applications can be submitted at pay.gov will be accepted March 15 – April 15, 2021 for camping between the dates of May 15 through September 30, 2021. Learn more.
- Information on the walk-up permitting process in 2021 can be found here
- Information on permitting for PNT thru-hikers can be found here
National Forest Information in Washington:
Washington State Parks:
- All State Parks along the PNT have reopened to local day-use activities. For camping availability, visit the Washington State Parks website, here
Washington State Forests:
- On May 5th, Washington State Forests reopened to day-use activities. Camping is permitted on some State Forests. Check the status before you go at this website.
Idaho State Response:
- Idaho is in Stage 3 of their Reopening Plan
- View Stage 3 Stay Healthy Guidelines here
- In Stage 3, there are no state restrictions on travel, however, individuals should adhere to all state, regional, city or county ordinances and resolutions, as well as CDC guidelines regarding isolation following travel.
- Panhandle Health District Guidelines
- City of Bonners Ferry News and Announcements
Idaho Panhandle National Forest:
- Many day-use sites and developed campgrounds have reopened. Visit this website for a complete list of closures.
Montana State Response:
- A state of emergency has been declared in Montana. Find more information here
- The National Guard remains authorized to screen travelers for symptoms of COVID-19
- Visitors should be aware that local regulations may differ across the state. Visitors to the PNT can find updates here.
- Current Montana Coronavirus News and Information
- Glacier County COVID-19 News and Information
- Flathead County COVID-19 News and Information
- Lincoln County COVID-19 News and Information
- Town of Eureka News and Resources
Glacier National Park:
- The east side of the National Park reopened to winter recreation on March 18th at Two Medicine, Cut Bank and St. Mary for foot traffic, skis and snowshoes. Regular winter vehicle closures remain in place. The roads into Cut Bank, and Two Medicine remain closed to vehicle traffic for the winter, but access by foot, skiing and snowshoeing is available past the gates as is typical of normal winter seasons.
- Advanced backcountry permit reservations will be accepted online, starting March 17th.
- Find information on the walk-in permitting process for the 2021 season, here. Wilderness permits may be available the day before or day of a desired trip start date. Approximately half of all sites in a campground are set aside for walk-in campers. However, that does not mean those sites will be available at all times.
National Forest Information in Montana:
Travel Advisories/ Restrictions:
- International travel advisories and restrictions
- Washington State Ferries may limit the number of walk-on passengers for some sailings and will extend the winter sailing schedule for the Keystone Ferry until June 20