National parks increase fees for 2016Get ready to reach a little deeper in your wallet if you're heading to one of the Northwest's national parks this travel season. Entry and camping fees at 14 Northwest parks (Washington and Oregon) are increasing in 2016.
There will be entrance fee hikes of $10 at Mt. Rainier and Olympic National Parks, and $2 at Fort Vancouver and Lewis & Clark National Historical Park. Crater Lake will rise entrance fees by a total of $20 by 2018.
The increases mark the first time since 2006 that the National Park Service raised fees at any national park, and are the first price hikes in two decades for some northwest parks.
Most of the additional funds will go to repairing aging infrastructure. At least 80 percent of all fee money will stay in each individual park, the park service says.
A record 275.2 million people visited national parks in 2015, a 3.7 percent increase from the previous year.
Planned fee increases:
Crater Lake: increased from $5 to $15 in 2015 – will rise to $20 by May, 2017 and $25 after May, 2018.
Mt. Rainier: increasing from $20 to $25 in May, 2016 – was $15 before May, 2015
Olympic: increasing from $20 to $25 in May, 2016 – was $15 before June, 2015
Lewis & Clark: increased from $3 to $5 on Jan. 1, 2016
Fort Vancouver: increased from $3 to $5 in 2015
North Cascades National Park Complex: car camping fees increased from $10-$12 to $16 in 2015 – no entrance fee
Lake Roosevelt: campsite and boat launch fees increasing – no entrance fee
The John Day Fossil Beds, Nez Pearce, Whitman Mission, San Juan Islands monuments, Klondike Gold Rush and Ebey's Landing are all completely free of charge. The Oregon Caves charge no entrance fee, but cave tours cost $10.
PHOTOS: Mr. Rainier
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