ST. PAUL (AP) -- The Boundary Waters Canoe Area in northern Minnesota will be closed until early May to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

The wilderness area will be closed for both day and overnight use from April 15 through May 4. That's when Gov. Tim Walz's extended state stay-at-home order is set to expire.

Reservations made through May 4 will receive a full refund, including reservation fees.

The Superior National Forest also plans to change its permit pickup requirements beginning May 5, to follow guidelines for social distancing.

Visitors can either print their Boundary Waters reservation confirmation email at home and use that as their permit, or pick up the permit in person at a business that remains open and is under an agreement with the Forest Service.

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