ST. GEORGE — Gunlock State Park, which saw crowding and a severe injury to one patron Saturday, has announced it would be closed Sunday, including the Gunlock Falls area.
Updated May 4 at 10 a.m. – A post on the Gunlock State Park Facebook page has announced that the park will be open on Monday. The post lists the conditions as windy, asks recreationists not to litter and more specifically advises anyone coming to the park to “Be respectful avoid groups. Social distance is important. Recreate in areas near your home.” An additional post Sunday following the announcement of the closure advised people to check social media before heading to the park.
Utah State Parks made the announcement on the park’s Facebook page Sunday morning.
“GUNLOCK STATE PARK INCLUDING THE FALLS AREA IS CLOSED TODAY. PLEASE FIND OTHER RESPONSIBLE RECREATION OPTIONS,” the post read, typed in all capital letters.
A Las Vegas woman suffered neck, shoulder and back injuries and had to be airlifted to Dixie Regional Medical Center after she tried jumping into a pool formed from the falls created by the Gunlock Reservoir spillway.
The overcrowding at the park and the falls also drew national attention from website TMZ, which highlighted the crowds at Gunlock Falls and the jumpers as an example of a lack of social distancing.
Gunlock, Sand Hollow and Quail Creek state park have each had to close their gates at some point Friday and Saturday because of overcrowding, as the state reduced its coronavirus risk level to orange on Friday and many business and stay home recommendations were lifted.
On its Facebook page Sunday morning, Sand Hollow State Park reported being near capacity and that it was likely to at least close off boat launches at some point Sunday.
Authorities also reported many of the visitors to the park being from out of state, where some stay home orders are still in place because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Park officials have not announced any further details on if the closure of Gunlock State Park will continue Monday.
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