As part of Minnesota's ongoing response to the COVID 19 pandemic, we continue to modify public events and services as needed to follow Stay Safe MN and CDC guidelines. DNR central office and regional offices are closed to the public at this time.
IMPORTANT: Please see the Outdoor Recreation and Facilities Guidelines for the latest information about recreating safely during the pandemic in compliance with Executive Order 21-01. Specific guidance for Charter and Launch Boats and Campgrounds also is available.
Frequently Asked Questions
Last updated: 1.11.21
Below are answers to some frequently asked questions. Please also see the Outdoor Recreation and Facilities Guidelines for information you might find useful.
For information about DNR engagement opportunities, including virtual public meetings and public input, please see our public engagement page for opportunities for input and engagement.
- How do I get a burning permit?
You may obtain and activate a burning permit online, or from a Township Fire Warden who is currently providing service. Some Township Fire Wardens may not be issuing burning permits at this time. If you would like to obtain a burning permit from your local Township Fire Warden, please call your local DNR Forestry Office for information on active wardens in your area. Check the burning restrictions page for current information before any burning. A burning permit is not required when there is a continuous unbroken cover of snow 3 inches deep or more surrounding the immediate area of the fire, sufficient to keep the fire from spreading.
- Do I need a permit for a small recreational fire or a campfire?
Small recreational fires and campfires are allowed without a burning permit, except where restricted by the local unit of government or land manager.
DNR-managed lands (state parks and recreation areas, state forests, SNAs , WMAs, and state trails)
- What is, and isn't, open?
- DNR-managed lands—including state parks, trails, state forests, recreation areas, wildlife management areas, and scientific and natural areas—are open to visitors.
- However, many buildings—including ranger stations, warming shelters, nature stores and visitor centers—are closed until further notice.
- Interpretive programs and group tours are also not available at this time.
- ATV trails, state trails, horse trails and trails within state parks, recreation areas, and forests are open. Individual trails may have localized closures due to construction or other conditions – check your location’s web page for current closures before you head out.
- For information about specific facilities or amenities, check the visitor alert for the state park, recreation area, forest, etc. you plan to visit. The most current information available will be on each location’s main web page.
- Can I make a new camping or lodging reservation?
Yes, you can reserve camping or lodging up to 120 days in advance. Camping reservations may be made online or by phone.
During the pandemic, lodging reservations can only be made through the call center (866-857-2757). This is because staff must manually adjust reservations to build in extra time for cleaning between stays.
- What do I need to know before I go to a park or recreation area?
- Plan ahead. Buy items like your vehicle permit or any required trail pass in advance to minimize person-to-person contact. Check the location-specific web page for the state park, recreation area, forest, etc. you plan to visit for any visitor alerts.
- Arrive prepared. Facilities you may have used in the past – including warming houses and visitor centers – may not be open at this time. Dress appropriately for the weather, and bring supplies with you.
- Follow the rules. Continue to follow all COVID-related guidance. Pay attention to signs, stay home if you feel sick, and practice social distancing—even outdoors.
- How can I get my discounted vehicle permit if the offices are closed?
If you qualify for a military discount, have a Federal Access Pass, or own a vehicle with a Minnesota-issued disability license plate or hang tag, you can still get your discounted vehicle permit. Contact Gooseberry Falls State Park for more information:
Gooseberry Falls State Park
3206 Highway 61 East
Two Harbors, MN 55616
- How can I purchase a Hiking Club or Passport Club kit if the nature stores are closed?
Contact Gooseberry Falls State Park at 218-595-7100 to purchase a Hiking Club or Passport Club kit over the phone. It will be mailed out to you.
Firearms, ATV, and Snowmobile Safety Training
- How can my child or I complete firearms, ATV, or snowmobile safety training?
The DNR has modified safety trainings in response to COVID-19:
- Snowmobile classroom training remains online. Youth snowmobile safety field days have been modified to comply with Executive Order 21-01 and the Outdoor Recreation and Facilities Guidelines.
- Firearms safety training for students of all ages is now available online. Students age 14 and older may obtain their firearms certification by taking the online hunter safety course and completing a virtual field day instead of the traditional in-person field day. Please note the one-year expiration date for online safety course vouchers (which are required for students to attend a field day) has been extended.
- Do all fishing regulations still apply?
Yes, all fishing regulations need to be followed.
- Do I still need a fishing license?
Yes, all of the fishing license requirements still apply.
- What are my options for purchasing a fishing license?
You may purchase a license at a retail establishment where fishing licenses are sold, online or call 888-665-4236. If you purchase a license with a tag or sticker online, allow 5-10 business days for delivery of the tag/sticker.
- Are there additional requirements for ice fishing at this time due to COVID-19?
While ice fishing:
- Maintain 6 feet of social distance from people of other households.
- Avoid gathering with more than two other households (up to 15 people).
- Do not share an ice house or ice fishing shelter with people outside of your household.
- Do all hunting regulations apply?
All hunting regulations must be followed.
- Do I still need a hunting license?
Yes, all hunting license requirements still apply.
- What are my options for purchasing a hunting license?
You may purchase a license at a retail establishment where hunting licenses are sold, online, or by calling 888-665-4236. If you purchase a license with a tag or sticker online, allow 5-10 business days for delivery of the tag/sticker.
Programs and Meetings
- Are DNR programs, events, trainings, and meetings canceled?
Many DNR-sponsored events, trainings, and meetings have been canceled, postponed, or transitioned to an online format. This includes:
- Some safety education training (see our education and safety training and DNR events webpages for details)
- Workshops and clinics, including Becoming an Outdoors Woman and Fishing in the Neighborhood
- Fishery tours
- Educational trainings, including Project Learning Tree, WET, and WILD trainings
- Naturalist programs
- Most volunteer activities (volunteer opportunities primarily are limited to remote or solo efforts right now; please see our volunteering webpage for information)
We will update this page, and our events calendar, as needed.
- Are public meetings canceled?
While in-person public meetings have been canceled for now, public engagement on DNR issues and projects remains a top priority. Please see our public engagement page for input and engagement opportunities.
Registrations and Renewals
- How do I renew my boat/ATV/OHV/snowmobile registration?
Renew your watercraft, ATV, snowmobile, off-highway motorcycle or ORV registration online and you will receive a temporary permit for immediate use (you will receive your registration in the mail within 2-3 weeks). You may also renew at your local deputy registrar's office.
- How do I transfer a non-titled boat?
Non-titled boats require a bill of sale from the seller to the buyer that includes the boat description, registration number, hull identification number, seller’s name, buyer’s name, and seller’s signature. Complete the universal registration form and mail it to MN DNR, License Center, 500 Lafayette Rd., St. Paul, MN 55155-4026 along with the bill of sale. Fees vary depending on length, use, type of boat, and registration expiration. If you have questions, please contact the DNR at 888-646-6367. Please have your complete boat description (including registration number, hull identification number, and boat length) handy to expedite your call. Transfers may also be completed at your local deputy registrar's office.
- How do I transfer my Minnesota-titled boat?
If titled, the seller must sign the title certificate. The buyer’s name also must be printed on the title certificate, and the buyer must complete the back of the certificate. Fees vary depending on length, use, type of boat, and registration expiration. If you have questions, please contact the DNR at 888-646-6367. Please have your title and complete boat description (including registration number, hull identification number, and boat length) handy to expedite your call. Title transfers can be mailed to MN DNR, License Center, 500 Lafayette Rd., St. Paul, MN 55155-4026. Title transfers may also be completed at your local deputy registrar's office.
- How do I register a boat/ATV/OHV/OHM/snowmobile that does not require a title?
For a non-titled watercraft, snowmobile, ATV, OHM or ORV that has not previously been registered in Minnesota, complete the universal registration form or title application form if you chose to title your watercraft. Include the bill of sale. The manufacturer statement of origin is also needed if you chose to title. Fees vary depending on length, use, type of boat and registration expiration. Proof of sales tax must be included. If purchased out of state, the difference in sales tax must be included if less than 6.875%. Local taxes may also be required. (Sales/use tax does not apply to private party sales.) NOTE: Titling is optional for watercraft older than 1980 and less than 16 feet. If you have questions, please contact the DNR at 888-646-6367. Registrations can be mailed to MN DNR, License Center, 500 Lafayette Rd., St. Paul, MN 55155-4026. Registrations may also be completed at your local deputy registrar's office.
- How do I register a boat that requires a Minnesota title but was purchased out of state from a private party?
To register a boat that has not previously been registered in Minnesota, complete a title and registration application form and include the out-of-state title signed by the seller (if the boat does not have a title, please see “How do I transfer a non-titled boat?” above). Fees vary depending on length, use, and type of boat. Sales/use tax does not apply to private party sales. If you have questions, please contact the DNR at 888-646-6367. Registrations can be mailed to MN DNR, License Center, 500 Lafayette Rd., St. Paul, MN 55155-4026. Registrations may also be completed at your local deputy registrar's office.
- How do I register a new boat that requires a Minnesota title but was purchased from an out-of-state dealer?
Complete a title and registration application form Include the manufacturer’s statement of origin and proof of sales tax. The difference in sales tax must be included if less than 6.875%. Local taxes may also be required. Title and registration fees vary depending on length, use, type of boat and registration expiration. If you have questions, please contact the DNR at 888-646-6367. Registrations can be mailed to MN DNR, License Center, 500 Lafayette Rd., St. Paul, MN 55155-4026. Registrations may also be completed at your local deputy registrar's office.
Traveling to Recreate
- Is it OK to travel to recreate?
Minnesotans are encouraged to stay close to home and are strongly discouraged from engaging in unnecessary travel, particularly to other states or countries. If you are thinking about traveling in-state to recreate, the following will help you minimize potential points of virus transmission:
- Travel as directly to your destination as possible and minimize stops along the way.
- Attempt to bring all needed supplies with you.
- If you do need to stop for gas or supplies, wear a manufactured or homemade cloth face covering.
- Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer after touching common surfaces (gas pumps, door handles, shared bathrooms, etc.).
- Do not travel if sick.
Please read the Outdoor Recreation and Facilities Guidelines for more information about staying safe while recreating outdoors.
- Can non-residents travel to Minnesota recreate (hunt, fish, camp, etc.)?
Executive Order 21-01 does not prevent travel to Minnesota. However, staying close to home is advised to help protect yourself and others. If you do visit, you are encouraged to follow the recommendations in the Minnesota Department of Health’s Quarantine Guidance. You also should:
- Observe Minnesota’s social distancing and face-covering requirements.
- Limit outdoor social gatherings to no more than three households or 15 people, and limit indoor social gatherings to no more than 2 households or 10 people
- Follow the travel advisory information in Executive Order 21-01.
If this page does not answer your questions, please check the Outdoor Recreation and Facilities Guidelines. You may also email the DNR’s Information Center or call 888-646-6367.