With the riding season here and in light of COVID-19 we need to give our friends, family and others the best chance to get through this situation. As we yearn to go back to “normal” riding and camping, we find that it may be a long way off in some areas. In the meantime as progression through this phased reopening is hard on businesses and the economy and some areas go into YELLOW, please abide by the direction set forth by the Governor and the state agencies in your area.

Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) has sent out a news release as to what will be open on State Parks and State Forests and when. You may find the release on DCNR’s web site (search “DCNR Plan for Reopening Some State Park, Forest Facilities”) as well as posted on Pennsylvania Equine Council’s website.

There seems to be some misunderstanding about the horse camping areas being open. According to Jason Albright, Assistant State Forester for DCNR, all horse camping areas in the YELLOW counties are open for horse camping; no one knows when the other RED counties will become YELLOW. Equestrian camping is not considered group camping. The trails are open. If you have any questions contact the DCNR office where you plan to ride and remember you must obtain a free permit to camp in the equestrian areas. DCNR Forest began taking reservations on May 15th.

There is much concern about travel out of RED areas into the YELLOW counties. Please be considerate. We know that some of the outbreaks of the virus in the western counties of PA came from folks traveling from the hot areas and bringing it to this area.

Bud Wills