New park fees for Pinnacles enter public comment review stage

Glacier National Park. Credit

The decree applies to 118 of the 417 national parks that charge an entry fee, including beloved preserves such as the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, Yosemite and Zion.

On Dec. 12, the NPS announced that visitors will be welcomed free of charge on just four days of the New Year - Martin Luther King Jr. The other 299 national parks do not have entrance fees, according to the Park Service. Day; April 21, the first day of National Park Week; Sept. 22, for National Public Lands Day; and November 11 for Veterans Day. Rocky is one of 17 parks included in the proposal, which would take effect for most parks this spring.

The additional revenue that would be generated by the increased fee is said to be used to enhance visitor services by funding such projects as the rehabilitation of the Bear Valley School, the construction of vault toilets to replace portable facilities and the building of a new entrance station at the east side of the park.

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The sharp decrease in the number of fee-free days comes as the National Park Service faces a maintenance backlog of more than $11 billion.

The entrance fee would be $70 per vehicle, up from $30 for a weekly pass. But even with the extra steps-and fees-you should be going to national parks, enjoying the great and diverse outdoors in the US and its territories. Discounted or free passes are available for senior citizens, current members of the military, families of fourth-grade students and disabled citizens.

The Park Service didn't explain why it was cutting back on free days. "America's parks must remain affordable for working families".

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