US Army Corps of Engineers Recreation – Closer Than You Think!
October 04, 2019

Many people know about the outdoor recreation opportunities offered by our nation's wildlife refuges, national parks and forests, but most do not know that the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) offers similar opportunities at its more than 400 lake and river projects nationwide. With a majority of USACE recreation sites located within 50 miles of large metropolitan areas, they offer easy, affordable access to millions of people. It's estimated that USACE hosts more than 250 million visits annually to its lands and waters, making it one of the leading federal providers of water-based outdoor recreation in the nation.

USACE recreation sites offer a diverse and dynamic outdoor experience to people of all ages. Visitors can enjoy traditional activities like fishing, camping, hiking and boating, or more rigorous activities like snorkeling, windsurfing, whitewater rafting, and mountain biking. USACE lakes and rivers provide important habitats for fish, wildlife, and endangered species while offering environmental learning opportunities for schools and youth organizations, introducing young people to conservation and appreciation of the outdoors.

Equally important to recreation is caring for these lands and waters. We invite you to join the 31,000 volunteers who serve annually on the 12 million acres of USACE lands and waters, assisting in environmental and recreation projects.  A great way to get involved is to join us at a National Public Lands Day event. Last year, NPLD volunteers removed 458 tires and 51,000 pounds of trash from USACE lands and waters, cleaned 1,115 miles of shoreline, planted 670 trees, improved 320 acres of habitat, and removed 2,165 pounds of invasive species at 162 USACE sites around the country. Let's make 2019 National Public Lands Day even better than last year. Try something new and join us at a Corps of Engineers NPLD event near you!

If you would like to join USACE in its efforts year round to protect and preserve these resources for future generations, information on volunteer opportunities and locations is available at the Volunteer Clearinghouse. Some of the volunteer opportunities available include visitor center staff, park and trail maintenance, water safety program presenter, and fish and wildlife habitat work.

For more information on USACE recreation opportunities, visit the Corps Lakes Gateway.