COVID-19 Response

Stay Safe Minnesota logo

As part of Minnesota's ongoing response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we continue to postpone, adjust, and cancel public events and services as needed to follow Stay Safe MN and CDC guidelines. DNR central office and regional offices are temporarily closed to the public at this time.

IMPORTANT: Please see the Outdoor Recreation and Facilities Guidelines for updated information about requirements during the four-week period specified in Executive Order 20-99 (Friday, November 20, 2020 at 11:59 pm through Friday, December 18, 2020 at 11:59 pm).

Please frequently check this page, as well as the DNR’s Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts, for updates.

Guidance for:

Minnesota’s COVID-19 response website provides more information about coronavirus in Minnesota and what we all can do to stay safe.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Last updated: 11.18.20

Below are answers to some frequently asked questions we are receiving.

For information about DNR engagement opportunities, including virtual public meetings and public input, please see our public meetings webpage for opportunities for input and engagement.

 

Burn Permits

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. Only share a campfire with members of your own household at this time.

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 by calling the call center (866-857-2757). Lodging reservations cannot be made online. This is because staff manually adjust reservations to build in extra time between stays.

What do I need to know before I go to a park or recreation area?
  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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
218-595-7100
[email protected]

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 firearms safety certification requirements on an interim basis as a result of COVID-19. Students 11 and older may still take their classroom training online. Students age 14 and older may obtain their 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.

The DNR is evaluating options for ATV and snowmobile safety training in light of EO 20-99. Updated information will be posted here as soon as it is available.

Fishing

Do all fishing regulations still apply?

Yes, all 2020 fishing regulations need to be followed. 

Do I still need a fishing license?

Yes, all of the 2020 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.

Hunting

Do all hunting regulations apply?

All 2020 hunting regulations must be followed.

CWD sample submission in areas affected by chronic wasting disease is not mandatory this year, but DNR strongly encourages hunters to voluntarily submit samples. Hunter participation continues to be critical for tracking disease activity and potential spread. Self-service CWD sampling stations are available for socially-distanced sample submission and are easy to use.

Do I still need a hunting license?

Yes, all 2020 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. Hunters who order deer licenses and tags online should allow 5-10 business days for delivery.

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:

  • Safety education training, including in-person firearms safety training (see firearms safety question above for details regarding online options)
  • 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

We will update this page, and our events calendar, as further changes are made, and will announce resumption of various programs when that occurs.

Are public meetings canceled?

While in-person public meetings have been canceled for now, public engagement on DNR issues and projects is a top priority. Please see our public meetings page for input and engagement.

Registrations and Renewals

How do I renew my boat/ATV/OHV/snowmobile registration?

Renew your watercraft, ATV, snowmobile, off-highway motorcycle or ORV online. You will receive a temporary permit for immediate use or at your local deputy registrar office Check here  for office location and hours.

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 PDF 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 office. Check here for office locations and hours.

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 transfer may also be completed at your local deputy registrar office. Check here for office locations and hours.

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 PDF 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 office. Check here for office locations and hours.

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. 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 office. Check here for office locations and hours.

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 office. Check here for office locations and hours.

Traveling to Recreate

Is it OK to travel to recreate?

Staying close to home is advised to help protect yourself and others; in particular, EO 20-99 recommends no out-of-state travel at this time. 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 Guidelines for more information about staying safe while recreating outdoors.

Can non-residents travel to Minnesota recreate (hunt, fish, camp, etc.)?

Executive Order 20-99 does not prevent travel to Minnesota. However, staying close to home is advised to help protect yourself and others. If you do visit, please observe Minnesota’s social distancing and face-covering requirements, only gather with people in your household, and follow the travel advisory information in Executive Order 20-99. 


Other questions

If this page does not answer your questions, please check the outdoor recreation guidelines. You may also email the DNR’s Information Center or call 888-646-6367.