Gov. Jay Inslee made the announcement at a press conference Monday where he opened rivers, lakes, hiking trails, public lands and state parks to day use. Inslee called the move a “partial opening.” He urged residents to make day trips, not overnight trips, and maintain social distancing in every situation. 

He also warned that “If this virus were to spring-back we might have to impose limits again.”

Day use activity will open in state parks, rivers, lakes, golf courses and hiking trails. Camping, public sports such as pick-up basketball games, and team sports should not resume. 

Group outings of more than a family unit, or household unit, are not permitted. On trails, step off the trial and let other hikers pass maintaining the appropriate social distance. People should not gather at boat ramps or trail heads. 

WDFW Director Kelly Susewind urged fishers to continue social distancing on the water. Only family or members of a living groups should share boats together. He said some sportsmen may need to travel long distances but for the most part he urged people to fish local. “By local,” Susewind said. “we basically mean day trips.” 

Dan Hoch, director of Washington Parks, said the state did not want crowds on ocean beaches and would manage closures to prevent them. Not all parks will open on May 5, he said. Check the Washington Parks Website for details on specific parks.

The announcement was made Monday at 2:30 by the Governor in a joint press video conference with WDFW Director Kelly Susewind and director of State Parks and Commissioner of Public Lands.