National forest closes camping, group rec sites


GAINESVILLE, Ga. — Camping and group recreation sites on the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forests have been closed indefinitely for the health and safety of visitors and staff. In response to guidance from State of Georgia health officials and experts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), camping and group recreation sites will be closed effective today, (March 21). This will include picnic pavilions and all restrooms, including at recreation sites and trailheads.

“As we work through an unpredictable and rapidly changing situation, health and safety is our number one priority,” said Acting Forest Supervisor Edward Hunter. “We are committed to continuing to support our communities and fulfill our mission as we all work together to minimize the impacts and spread of COVID-19.”

In addition to closing camping and group recreation sites, all Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forests offices are operating virtually until further notice. This means most employees are teleworking and are no longer doing any business in person. To protect the health and safety of our employees and customers, we also are not scheduling face-to-face meetings. However, continuing our service to the public during this time is very important. Customers needing information, permits and maps are encouraged to visit the website or call the nearest office during regular business hours for assistance:

CONF district map Chatsworth 706-695-6736

Blairsville 706-745-6928

Lakemont 706-754-6221

Eatonton 706-485-7110

Gainesville 770-297-3000

Notifications to visitors making reservations through will be made as soon as possible and refunds will be processed.

Please see a list of facility closures on the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forests by visiting (scroll down to Closures):

By closing campsites and group recreation sites, the USDA Forest Service is taking necessary measures to safeguard the health of employees and the public. The health and safety of employees and the nearby communities is always our top priority at the USDA Forest Service. Please remember to review current recommendations from the CDC and focus on recreating safely while protecting yourself, Forest Service employees and our volunteers.

Visitors are primarily responsible for their own safety. Keep in mind, trails and roads may be open for use, but please recreate responsibly and follow public health guidelines regarding social distancing while you recreate in National Forests. Law enforcement and search and rescue operations may be limited due to COVID-19 issues. High risk activities such as rock climbing or motorized activities that increase your chance of injury or distress should be avoided. For the most current and accurate information about COVID-19, contact your local health officials or visit the CDC website at Information from the U.S. Department of Agriculture is available at:

Visitors are encouraged to review the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forests’ website for updates and more information, at:

USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer, and lender.

About the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forests

The Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forests provide the finest outdoor recreation opportunities and natural resources in Georgia. Featuring nearly 867,000 acres across 26 counties, thousands of miles of clear-running streams and rivers, approximately 850 miles of recreation trails, and dozens of campgrounds, picnic areas, and other recreation activity opportunities, these lands are rich in natural scenery, history and culture. The mission of the USDA Forest Service is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations.

To receive instant alerts and updates on forest information, follow @ChattOconeeNF on Twitter and Facebook or visit us on the web at


Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYN attracts 300,000+ page views per month, 3.5 million impressions per month and approximately 15,000 viewers per week on and up to 60,000 Facebook page reach. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at


Leave a comment

Back to Top

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!