[Photo by Murice D. Miller / Moab Sun News]

Today, the National Park Service announced an across-the-board mask requirement for all parks and federal buildings, including Arches and Canyonlands national parks, commenting that the mandate is to “protect the health of those who live, work and visit our national parks and facilities,” in a statement. 

“Wearing a mask around others, physical distancing, and washing your hands are the simplest and most effective public health measures to help stop the spread of COVID-19,” said NPS Office of Public Health Director Captain Sara Newman. 

Under the order released Feb.2, face masks will now be required at all times in all NPS buildings and facilities. Masks are also required on NPS-managed lands when physical distancing cannot be maintained, including narrow or busy trails. Additional public health measures may be in place at individual parks.

Previously, all parks have encouraged wearing masks but there was no formal policy from the federal government.

“Working with public health officials and following the latest science and guidance, we can make national parks safer for employees, visitors and partners,” said NPS Deputy Director Shawn Benge. “We will continue to evaluate operations and make appropriate modifications to visitor services as needed.”

COVID-19 guidelines are changing often. Please check the websites for Arches National Park and Canyonlands National Park for further detail.

This page may be updated as information becomes available.