RV Coronavirus News Update, March 19, 2020

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Please send your news about the coronavirus pandemic as it applies to RVers to editor@rvtravel or submit it here.

Coronavirus Updates for RVers

Reminder: The U.S./Canada border is now closed to all non-essential traffic, which includes travelers crossing the border for “recreation and tourism” purposes. Canadian snowbirds returning home are exempted.

Regarding the U.S./Mexico border, according to the U.S. Embassy in Mexico as of March 19, the following are the Entry and Exit Requirements:
•There are no entry or exit restrictions in place because of COVID-19.
•Mexico has implemented temperature-screening measures at some of its airports. Passengers with abnormal temperatures and travel to high-risk areas might be subject to additional health screening.
•Beyond standard travel documentation, travelers to Mexico do not require any additional documentation to enter or exit.

In Death Valley National Park, the following campgrounds are closed: Furnace Creek, Mesquite Spring, Texas Springs, Emigrant, Sunset and Stovepipe Wells. Furnace Creek and Stovepipe Wells Visitor Centers are also closed.

The Escapees RV Club has announced to members that all events currently scheduled through June 17 will be cancelled or postponed. Events affected include Head-out Program (HOP) activities, Hangouts, Convergences, and RVers Boot Camps.

The National Park Service (NPS) has suspended the collection of all park entrance fees until further notice. More.

All events, activities, special event reservations, pavilion rentals and camping/cabin reservations at Florida State Parks have been cancelled for the next 60 days. Camping will be closed Friday, March 20. The parks will remain open for day use; however, hours of operation have been reduced to 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty in New York are both closed. In Washington, D.C., the Washington Monument closed on March 14, along with Ford’s Theatre National Historic Site, the Old Post Office Tower and Belmont-Paul Women’s Equality National Monument.

In Oregon, the Oregon Coast Aquarium and Cape Perpetua Visitor Center are closed.

Readers at our coronavirus group at Facebook are reporting that rest areas along I-40 in New Mexico are closed and at least some Pennsylvania rest areas. If you know more, please let us know, editor@rvtravel.com .

The FMCA Beaver Ambassador Club has cancelled its International Rally planned for Kerrville Texas, April 22. The FMCA chapter South Texas Renegades has cancelled its April 9, 10, 11 rally at Pioneer Beach RV Resort, Port Aransas, Texas.

The 63rd Airstream Club International Rally (the WBCCI) scheduled for June 20-27, 2020, at The Ranch Events Complex, Loveland, Colorado, has been cancelled.

The North Carolina/South Carolina WIT Rally to be held at Ocean Lakes Family Campground in Myrtle Beach, SC, on May 1-3 has been cancelled.

San Francisco has shut down its cable cars, one of its biggest tourist attractions.

Fairfax County Parks Authority (Northern Virginia) has closed all park facilities and campgrounds through March 29.

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources has closed all state parks. That also includes all fish and wildlife areas, recreational areas and historic sites, as well as the cancellation of upcoming scheduled events.

In case you can’t find hand sanitizer in the store.

Coronavirus concerns have led the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to expand its state park closures zone to include Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery counties. State parks now closed to the public are Delaware Canal, Evansburg, Fort Washington, Marsh Creek, Neshaminy, Nockamixon, Norristown Farm, Ralph Stover, Ridley Creek, Tyler, Washington Crossing and White Clay Creek. Goat Hill Serpentine Barrens in William Penn State Forest also lies within the closure zone and is closed to the public.

The Visitor Center at Bryce Canyon National Park is closed. First-come, first-served camping remains available at North Campground.

The museum and visitor center at Gettysburg National Military Park will be closed through March 31.

Camping is closed at Mesa Verde National Park. As of March 17, the Chapin Mesa Museum, Visitor and Research Center, Spruce Tree Terrace, and Mesa Verde Museum Association stores are closed until further notice. Tours of Cliff Palace have also been cancelled until May 1. Where it is possible to adhere to the latest health guidance, Cliff Palace driving loop, Mesa Top driving loop, and the Far View Sites will remain open for visitors.

The elevators at Carlsbad Caverns are closed. The steep Natural Entrance Trail is open. Going down is easy, walking back up is a different story.

In Elkhart County, Indiana, ground zero of RV manufacturing in America, local officials have closed schools. Nearby Goshen College has closed, and will opt for remote learning. RV factories continue to operate (but for how long?).

Adventure Caravans has rescheduled all its remaining March and April tours and is evaluating its May tours. Call if you have questions: (936) 327-3428.


HOUSEHOLD & HAND SANITIZERS. If you’re concerned about keeping germs away, there are plenty of products here to do the job.


Anthony Chabot campground near Castro Valley and the Del Valle campground southeast of Livermore are closed. Both are in Northern California.

The Saddlehorn Visitor Center in Colorado National Monument is closed.

All local Social Security offices are closed to the public for in-person service. The decision protects the population the agency serves — older Americans and people with underlying medical conditions — and its employees during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

In Utah, the Quarry Visitor Center and the Quarry Exhibit Hall in Dinosaur National Monument have closed.

Old Federal Campground, on Lake Lanier, northeast of Atlanta, GA, is reported to have closed.

THESE STATE PARK SYSTEMS HAVE CLOSED THEIR CAMPGROUNDS: Florida, Illinois, New Mexico, North Carolina (through March 31) and Pennsylvania (through March 31).


WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT MORE THAN EVER
RVtravel.com is working overtime to bring you the news about how the current pandemic is affecting the lives of RVers. In the meantime, some of our advertisers have stopped their campaigns due to necessity. It’s more important than ever that our readers help us with their financial support. Won’t you please help our efforts by becoming a voluntary subscriber?


READ YESTERDAY’S NEWS

New Facebook Group: How the coronavirus is impacting RVers. Get updates throughout the day about park and campground closings, cancelled rallies and RV shows — and more. Join in the conversation with other RVers about what’s on all our minds right now.

If you are a member of an RV club or are affiliated with an RV-related event would you please let us know if its gatherings, meetings, etc., are cancelled or postponed because of the coronavirus? We’ll pass along the info to our readers. We appreciate any news related to RVing that’s being affected by the virus. Please submit it here. Thank you!

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Gray
6 months ago

A friend who early on came down with severe Covid-19 symptoms needed immediate care in his rural hospital. Days later his doctor came to his isolation ward with “good news, bad news:”
“Fred, your lungs are failing and you need immediate help on a ventilator machine. But we don’t have one for you; the last one is already in use.”
“So what’s the good news?” my friend asked.
“Well, the local vet has a swine ventilator. He’s offered it to us. We think it will help your case, but we need your permission to proceed. What do you say?”
“Oink! Oink-oink OINK!”

Dawn Gogin
6 months ago

If you have a job in Alaska and are scheduled to be there May 15th… would a letter from employer get you across the Canadian border?

John
6 months ago
Reply to  Dawn Gogin

No. My wife and I are trying to get back to our home in Alaska and were told that we could not proceed at this time.

97TJ
6 months ago
Reply to  Dawn Gogin

Alaska state ferry at Bellingham is probably your best bet

squaredancer
6 months ago

After careful evaluation of the ongoing public health situation, Texas State Parks will be limiting park programming and closing public access to park headquarters, visitor centers and park stores starting at 12 p.m. Thursday, March 19. As part of these operational changes, parks will be suspending all cash transactions where feasible. Visitors are encouraged to utilize the self-pay stations, the online reservation system and credit card transactions at this time. Other reduced services include the suspension of equipment rentals and interpretive programs.

Michael
6 months ago

Will there be a daily update (like the daily tips) email?

Admin
RV Staff (@rvstaff)
6 months ago
Reply to  Michael

Yes, Michael. Look in the Daily Tips newsletter for the link in the top section for the most recent coronavirus news affecting RVers. Stay healthy! 😀 —Diane at RVtravel.com

David & Linda
6 months ago

So where are all of those who full-time going to go? I know most private campgrounds are still open, for now. It makes NO sense that state park campgrounds are closed, but day-use areas are still open. How about they hire someone to clean the bath facilities more often if that is their concern.

cee
6 months ago
Reply to  David & Linda

Bathrooms are a point of contact to spread this virus. Do you want to put yourself at risk by cleaning the bathrooms without the proper protective masks? It makes NO sense to keep day use open while closing campgrounds. It’s a trying world we live in right now. Be safe.

livingboondockingmexico
6 months ago

Still nothing regarding Mexico rvers returning to the U.S. and Canada although Canada has closed their border except for Canadians and Canadian residents. Mexico rvers returning to the states are reporting little to no issues as of now. Some report not so good treatment but that could be based on an individual U.S. border agent’s criteria. Each agent is different. It would be great to have some official information for those who are currently in Mexico wondering how and when to get home.

Admin
RV Staff (@rvstaff)
6 months ago

Hi, livingboondockingmexico. I just looked at the website for the U.S. Embassy in Mexico and here is part of their information dated March 19 (today):

Entry and Exit Requirements:
* There are no entry or exit restrictions in place because of COVID-19.
* Mexico has implemented temperature-screening measures at some of its airports. Passengers with abnormal temperatures and travel to high-risk areas might be subject to additional health screening.
* Beyond standard travel documentation, travelers to Mexico do not require any additional documentation to enter or exit.

The website is updated daily. https://mx.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information/
Take care. —Diane at RVtravel.com

Gray
6 months ago

Excellent service, RV Travel. Thanks.
Meanwhile… it’s enlightening to realize that during this exponential epidemic when each day’s actions are so critical, decisive action from the federal government is mere weeks away.

Todd Nighswonger
6 months ago
Reply to  Gray

That liberal response is not only wrong but not helpful to anyone but yourself perhaps. I guess that’s why you’re not willing to use your full name. I’d be embarrassed too if I we’re you but so glad I’m not.

Roy Frazier
6 months ago
Reply to  Gray

Yes, Maybe we should move to China or Italy where things are moving faster. Or, better yet, North Korea. The government is moving very fast there!