News Flash

Health - Public Health News

Posted on: April 15, 2020

Keep Our Open Spaces Safe Places During COVID-19

It’s starting to feel more like Spring in our lovely corner of the Pacific Northwest, and that means we may be eager to use our county’s extensive trail and park network. Getting outside can reduce stress, keep you physically active, and improve your mood. We encourage getting fresh air and urge everyone to use new guidelines to keep our open spaces safe for everyone.

Here are some recommendations to help keep you and others safe while enjoying the outdoors:

  • Keep moving, then leave. At this time, parks remain open so we can get fresh air and exercise. These spaces are open so we can stay active, not to hang out. City of Bellingham is requesting everyone follow these guidelines.
  • Stay 6 feet away from others, at all times. If this is not possible, find a less busy area. Only go to parks alone or with members of your own household. If you’re at a park or on a trail and it’s difficult to maintain six feet of physical distance between yourself and others, look for a different place to be. Wider trails are better, like old logging roads. We rely on each and every resident to make decisions that make physical distancing possible. If you’re curious about what parks and trails are within walking distance of your home, check out the park-finder app.
  • Be considerate: If you are passing someone on a trail from behind, let them know, and leave plenty of space between each other (at least 6 ft). If you are walking or bicycling in a group with household members, move to a single file line when passing to allow for enough space between others. Don’t spit or blow your nose on the ground. If walking a dog, shorten the leash when necessary so others can pass easily. If you see a dog, avoid the urge to pet it.
  • Think about your ability to be outside relative to others. If you have plenty of open space in your own neighborhood, leave public parks and trails for people who don’t have those resources nearby. Use parks and trails when they are least busy.
  • Be safe, use common sense, obey rules and laws. Respect a park’s “closed” sign and encourage others to do the same. Be prepared for park restrooms and drinking fountains to be closed.
  • Reconsider risky activities. Don’t take chances that might land you in the emergency room or a doctor’s office. Be prepared with necessary safety equipment and extra water.
  • Avoid driving to recreate if possible: walk or bike from your home if you can. When you arrive at a trailhead or park, don’t congregate in the picnic areas or parking lots.
  • Consider wearing a mask. WCHD recommends wearing a cloth mask when in public places. This is even more important if you’re breathing hard, like while jogging or walking up hills.

Curious about what’s open and what organizations are doing to help users be socially distant while using trails? Check out these resources:




Facebook Twitter Email

Other News in Health - Public Health News

Whatcom County COVID-19 Update for 2/25/22

Posted on: February 25, 2022

Whatcom County COVID-19 Update for 2/18/22

Posted on: February 18, 2022

Whatcom County COVID-19 Update for 2/11/22

Posted on: February 11, 2022

Understanding COVID-19 At-Home Tests

Posted on: January 26, 2022

Back to Basics for the Omicron Surge

Posted on: January 11, 2022

The Omicron variant

Posted on: November 29, 2021

How to Stay Safe When You Can’t Stay Dry

Posted on: November 16, 2021

Vaccine supply for 5- to 11-year-olds

Posted on: November 9, 2021

Don’t Forget the Flu

Posted on: November 2, 2021

Tips for Safe Holiday Travels

Posted on: October 19, 2021

Changes to the local data dashboard

Posted on: October 12, 2021

Whatcom County COVID-19 Update for 9/17/21

Posted on: September 17, 2021

Mask guidance in Whatcom County

Posted on: July 29, 2021

Update on the Delta variant

Posted on: July 26, 2021

Tips for Staying Safe on Open Water

Posted on: July 16, 2021

Vaccine Update for 7/7/21

Posted on: July 7, 2021

Top Tips for a Healthy 4th

Posted on: July 2, 2021

I’m fully vaccinated: What now?

Posted on: March 29, 2021

Variant B.1.1.7 Found in Whatcom County

Posted on: February 24, 2021

Updated Guidance for Phase 2

Posted on: July 25, 2020

Share Compassion, Not COVID

Posted on: July 18, 2020

Responding to COVID-19 Outbreaks

Posted on: June 9, 2020

Is it safe to gather with friends?

Posted on: May 23, 2020

Got Symptoms? Get Tested!

Posted on: April 30, 2020

What We Know About BA.2

Posted on: March 29, 2022