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Vicksburg District announces changes to campgrounds length-of-stay policy at Mississippi lakes

Published June 2, 2020

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Vicksburg District has announced changes to the length-of-stay policy at its campgrounds at its Mississippi lakes – Arkabutla, Enid, Grenada and Sardis – that have gone into effect as of June 1.

Campers will be limited to a stay of no more than 14 consecutive days at a single USACE Vicksburg District campground. At the end of their 14-day stay, campers must leave the campground but will be allowed to relocate to a different USACE campground at the same lake.

Previously, campers were allowed to extend their stay for up to 14 additional days during the peak recreation season, which typically spans from March to October. No camping extensions will be permitted until further notice.

Up-to-date information about the status of campgrounds at the USACE Vicksburg District’s recreation sites is available at the following link: https://go.usa.gov/xw4K5

All campground reservations and payments must be made in advance exclusively online at https://www.recreation.gov/. The move to online reservations and payments is intended to reduce risk to park rangers and visitors.

Shower facilities, comfort stations and dump stations will be open where available. Boat ramps, nature trails, individual picnic sites and fishing areas, as well as nearby amenities, remain open. The collection of all day use fees has been suspended until Oct. 1.

All pavilions, picnic areas, beaches, playgrounds, amphitheaters and drinking fountains will remain closed until further notice. These closures are intended to prevent large gatherings and common use of high-touch surfaces.

All USACE field offices and visitor centers will remain closed to the public until further notice. Applications for special use permits will be reviewed and approved on a case-by-case basis. 

Visitors to the USACE Vicksburg District’s Mississippi lakes must practice social distancing and adhere to any other mandates issued by local, state and federal officials, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The Vicksburg District strongly encourages visitors to wash their hands properly, stay at home if they are experiencing symptoms and follow any guidance provided by local, state and federal officials.

The USACE Vicksburg District temporarily closed select recreation site attractions across Mississippi, Louisiana and Arkansas to the public in March. All Vicksburg District visitor centers, interpretive centers and field offices will remain closed to the public until further notice.

Arkabutla, Enid, Sardis and Grenada lakes, the four Mississippi flood control reservoirs in the Vicksburg District’s area of responsibility, were authorized by the Flood Control Act of 1936, which provided a plan designed to address flooding that originated in the Yazoo Basin. The four reservoirs are used to hold runoff, or excess rainwater, as a flood-prevention measure. With approximately 3.2 million visitors each year, the north Mississippi lakes also contribute approximately $82 million into the local economy.

The USACE Vicksburg District owns and operates more than 100 recreation areas across Mississippi, Arkansas and Louisiana where millions of visitors enjoy fishing, camping, hunting, boating, hiking, swimming, geocaching and more every year. The district’s 10 flood control reservoirs across Mississippi, Arkansas and Louisiana provide numerous benefits to the region, including flood risk management, hydropower, water supply, wildlife management and recreation.

The USACE Vicksburg District is engineering solutions to the nation’s toughest challenges. The Vicksburg District encompasses a 68,000-square-mile area across portions of Mississippi, Arkansas and Louisiana that holds seven major river basins and incorporates approximately 460 miles of mainline Mississippi River levees. The district is engaged in hundreds of projects and employs approximately 1,100 personnel.


Jessica Dulaney

Release no. 20-045