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Live near trails? Here's advice on how to safely hike during the coronavirus pandemic

If you absolutely must hike, find a trail that respects social distancing and keeps you at a safe distance from others, Gov. Newsom said.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The need to hit a hiking trail...is real. But where can you go and how can you do it without endangering others?

Before you continue reading, remember that the social distancing advisement is to walk, run, hike and bike in your own neighborhood and only go to parks closest to you. 

So, if you don't live near trails -- you should not be driving to them. 

Not long after social distancing guidelines and stay at home orders were put in place, people went out en masse to recreational areas in areas like Auburn and Folsom. 

ABC10 spoke with park rangers who said, since many weren't able to go to work, the crowds weren't just on the weekends -- they were all week. 

Let's not do that again.

RELATED: Crowds come out to hike state park as social distancing continues


Our ears perked up when we heard Gov. Gavin Newsom say "hiking" in his daily announcement on Wednesday (those are at noon daily and we stream here on ABC10.com). The weather is getting better, so if you absolutely must hike, find a trail that respects social distancing and keeps you a safe distance from others, Gov. Newsom said. 

"If you do that, you must practice safe physical distancing," Newsom said. "If you're on a single trailhead going up, and people are coming down...you can't do that."

While the recommendation is to only go places in the radius of your home, on Wednesday Newsom seemed to acknowledge that some will venture out. His advice is to check for closures before driving somewhere. 

"Let's not step back, let's continue to move forward," Newsom said. "As we have as a state in ways that should make all of us proud."


  • All 280 State Parks are temporarily closed to vehicular traffic until further notice. 
  • Parks are temporarily closed to the public - including beaches, historic parks, natural reserves and recreation areas. 
  • High public-use areas like museums, visitor centers and cafes have also been closed.
  • All campgrounds in the state are closed. Current reservation holders affected by this should already have been contacted and will get a refund. 
  • Events at any of the above areas have been canceled. No new event requests are being taken at this time. 

So far the only counties with lists of closures are Los Angeles, Mendocino, Mono, Monterey, San Diego and Ventura counties. The list is updated every day! Check it before going on a hike. 

If you love being outside, and can't wait to get back there, share one of these flyers on your social pages to remind your friends and family to stay in their home radius. Find the latest information and updates, here. 



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