RV camping will be allowed in state parks starting May 1

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Arkansas State Parks is opening up its campgrounds to people with RVs starting May 1.

“Our bathhouses will not be open, so it’s important that if you have an RV, you need to have a restroom that is inside,” Meg Matthews said.

Meg Matthews with Arkansas State Parks said slowly rolling out camping is the best way to protect everyone.

“Starting with RVs that are all self-contained, it’s practical, it’s the safest way for not only our visitors but also our employees,” she said.

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This is only for Arkansas residents. Any out of state RVs will not be allowed.

You have to make a reservation online first on the Arkansas State Parks website before you enter the campgrounds.

“We’ve never allowed people to just arrive and camp,” Matthew said. “If somebody makes a reservation and it comes from out of state, we won’t be allowing that.”

All lodges, tent camping and yurts are still closed for the time being.

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“However, we’re really hoping to open up in a limited fashion some of those other camping experiences on May 15,” Matthews said.

May 15 is also a target date for opening up state park restaurants for take out only, as well as visitor centers and gift shops.

“This is a very fluid situation, although that may change,” Matthews said.

As for Pinnacle Mountain trails and Petit Jean Mountain, it is still unclear when those will be opened back up.

“Those are two of our most popular parks and sometimes it’s hard to maintain social distancing with visitors. Safety is always our first concern, so we are going to take a good hard look at that and make a determination,” Matthews said.