Entry fee for Shenandoah National Park could spike to $70, along with 16 other parks

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PHOTO: Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park, VA, courtesy Lorax
PHOTO: Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park, VA, courtesy Lorax

The National Park Service (NPS) is considering increasing fees at 17 national parks, including Shenandoah National Park, during peak visitor seasons.

During the peak season at each park (busiest five-month stretch), the entrance fee would be raised to $70 per private, non-commercial vehicle; $50 per motorcycle; and $30 per person on bike or foot.  The National Park Service is also proposing increasing entry fees for commercial operators and commercial tours, including application and management fees.

The national parks selected were chosen because these 17 parks are the top revenue parks for the National Park Service, collecting 70% of the total of all entrance fees throughout the country. These parks are:

● Acadia National Park (ACAD)
● Arches National Park (ARCH)
● Bryce Canyon National Park (BRCA)
● Canyonlands National Park (CANY)
● Denali National Park (DENA)
● Glacier National Park (GLAC)
● Grand Canyon National Park (GRCA)
● Grand Teton National Park (GRTE)
● Joshua Tree National Park (JOTR)
● Mount Rainier National Park (MORA)
● Rocky Mountain National Park (ROMO)
● Olympic National Park (OLYM)
● Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park (SEKI)
● Shenandoah National Park (SHEN)
● Yellowstone National Park (YELL)
● Yosemite National Park (YOSE)

NPS officials say the fees have become an important source of revenue used to improve the visitor experience and recreation opportunities in national parks and on other federal lands, adding, “The funds raised are critically needed to improve facilities and infrastructure and to provide an enhanced level of service, all of which would have a direct impact on the visitor.”

However, many national park users are not completely sold on the idea.

The National Park Service is asking for feedback regarding the proposed changes via an online forum.  Click here to access the feedback portal.

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