Saskatchewan Provincial Parks' annual campsite reservation launch saw thousands of successful bookings take place over a two-week period, from April 12 to 23, 2021.
A total of 43,566 nightly, group and seasonal campsite reservations were made during the 2021 reservation launch, which was an increase of 110 per cent compared to the 2020 bookings (*only 50 per cent of sites were available due to COVID restrictions) and an increase of 65 per cent compared to the 2019 bookings.
"This April, a new campsite reservation system was released," Parks, Culture and Sport Minister Laura Ross said. "With nearly 44,000 campsite reservations made during launch, the new system successfully managed a very large volume of users and transactions at once and minimized the time customers spent waiting in a queue. Many campers were able to successfully secure a site this season."
Though most weekends during the summer months filled up quickly, there are still plenty of campsites available throughout the weekdays this summer, or in to September. Those who were unable to reserve their desired site are encouraged to check back to the reservation system often as changes and cancellations do happen and sites may become available. Also, new this year, a feature called 'Camping this Weekend' will help campers find a last minute spot.
With provincial park campgrounds officially opening this Thursday, May 20, campers are reminded to check the current list of provincial park fire restrictions prior to their visit. Restrictions are currently in place in a number of parks due to dry conditions. All open fires in the affected parks are prohibited, however the Canadian Standards Association's approved self-contained portable gas devices will be permitted for cooking and heating purposes. An up-to-date list of all affected parks can be found at https://saskparks.com. Once again, an alcohol and recreational cannabis ban will be in effect for the May long weekend from Thursday to Monday in all provincial park and recreation site campgrounds. The ban helps ensure that provincial parks are places for everyone to enjoy. Cottages, rental cabins and any business facilities serving liquor in licensed establishments in parks are not affected by the ban.
The health and safety of Saskatchewan residents, park users and employees is Sask Parks' priority. Additional COVID safety protocols such as enhanced cleaning, signage to ensure physical distancing and proper mask use will be in place this season. Sask Parks will be following all public health orders put in place by the Saskatchewan Health Authority.
Saskatchewan residents are asked to follow restrictions and public health guidelines for their area. The most recent guidelines can be found on www.saskatchewan.ca.
Sask Parks is looking forward to welcoming campers back for another safe and memorable camping season. Campers are reminded if they have made a campsite reservation in advance and have received and displayed their entry permit, to proceed directly to their campsite and they will be automatically checked in. Park visitors coming out for just the day can purchase entry in advance online at https://saskparks.com
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