USFS day-use recreation fees waved Monday

BEND, Ore. – The U.S. Forest Service will waive fees at day-use recreation sites in Oregon and Washington on Monday, February 20th in honor of Presidents Day.

“Our fee-free days touch on every season and serve as an enticement to new and repeat visitors to come out and enjoy their national forests and grasslands,” said U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell. “These public lands offer rich experiences for everyone, from the avid sportsman to the casual hiker or nature observer.”

This fee waiver includes many picnic areas, boat launches, trailheads and visitor centers. Concession operations will continue to charge fees unless the permit holder wishes to participate. Fees for camping, cabin rentals, heritage expeditions, or other permits still apply. The fee waiver does not apply to SnoParks although they might be located on national public lands. The SnoPark permit program is sponsored by the states of Oregon and Washington.

Check with your local forest or on Recreation.gov to see where fees are required. Go online to find a national forest or grassland near you.

Mark your calendars for the following Forest Service fee-free days in 2017:

·         National Trails Day, June 3, 2017

·         National Get Outdoors Day, June 10, 2017

·         National Public Lands Day, September 30, 2017

·         Veterans Day Weekend, November 11-12, 2017

Recreation fees help to support and maintain recreation facilities and services, including public safety, recreation site maintenance and improvements, educational experiences, informational exhibits, youth programs and partnerships, and interpretive programs. In 2016, over $10 million in recreation fee revenues was invested to enhance visitor experiences at Forest Service recreation sites in Oregon and Washington.

The Pacific Northwest Region consists of 16 National Forests, 59 District Offices, a National Scenic Area, and a National Grassland comprising 24.7 million acres in Oregon and Washington and employing approximately 3,550 people. To learn more about the U.S. Forest Service in the Pacific Northwest, visit www.fs.usda.gov/r6