GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – Many of us are looking to take a break from our regular routine of Zoom meetings and Google chatrooms and get some fresh air, especially as we are moving into spring.

Camping at Wisconsin State Parks has become an increasingly popular activity during the pandemic.

So much so, users are taking to social media to complain about visitors hoarding campsites, but the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources says that isn’t exactly the case.

“We definitely are seeing more advanced reservations moving into 2021 than in prior years, but there’s still a lot of availability out there if folks can be flexible with their locations and times,” says Christopher Pedretti, Program Manager at the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

He also says the limit to reserve a campsite is two weeks, so the DNR can try to accomodate as many people as possible. You can reserve a campsite up to 11 months in advance of the date you are arriving. The more popular destinations like Devil’s Lake State Park in Baraboo and Peninsula State Park in Fish Creek typically book up the fastest, according to Pedretti.

“If folks are looking to camp at some of those really popular camping properties, especially for electricity, you need to be able to plan in advance. Certainly, the outdoors is a great place to get out and escape. That resurgence in interest in the outdoors has been a great thing,” says Pedretti.

With more people developing an interest in camping, the DNR is taking COVID-19 precautions to keep state park visitors safe.

“We’ve seen record numbers of attendance coming into the state park system. We’ve put in auto check-in features, so people don’t have to congregate at our check-in stations, which are closed to check-in for camping,” says Pedretti.

Pedretti’s advice to those looking to go camping is to explore the beauty each State Park has to offer. Wisconsin has 49 different State Parks to choose from, so there are plenty of different options to explore.

“Branch out, because there’s a lot of state park and forest properties out there and you might just discover something new that you never even knew existed,” says Pedretti.

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources offers several ways to reserve a campsite. Campers can make a reservation online, through the DNR’s call center, and also make same-day reservations.

For more information on reserving a State Park campsite, click here.