First-Come, First-Served Permits
The park saves approximately 30 percent of available wilderness permits to be issued on a first-come, first-served basis. These permits can be issued the same day your trip starts, or up to one day before your trip starts, but no sooner than one day. The only way to acquire a first-come, first-served permit is by coming to any Ranger Station in the park and attempting to get the permit, which is subject to availability. First-come, first-served permits cannot be issued over the phone.
When you come into the Ranger Station to attempt to get your permit, be sure to have the following information:
In the summer, Ranger Stations where you can acquire permits are: The Longmire Wilderness Information Center at Longmire, the Jackson Visitor Center at Paradise, the Ohanapecosh Visitor Center at Ohanapecosh, the White River Wilderness Information Center at the White River Entrance, the Sunrise Visitor Center at Sunrise and the Carbon River Ranger Station at the Carbon River Entrance. Note: There is no Ranger Station at Mowich Lake. The closest Ranger Station is at the Carbon River Entrance. Most ranger stations are open seasonally, so make sure to check their hours of operation.
In the winter, permits are available at the Longmire Museum every day and the Jackson Visitor Center on weekends. Self-registration is available at the Carbon River Ranger Station, Ohanapecosh Ranger Station, and the Highway 410 entrance arch at the park's north boundary. Learn more about winter camping. The alternative option to getting a first-come, first-served permit is to attempt to get a reservation.
The first-come, first-served permit was not available when I tried to get it.
I want to get a first-come, first-served permit for Summerland on July 15, but when I get to the Ranger Station they tell me there are no more permits for that night. How is this possible?
Scenario 1: Other parties may have gotten the permits before you that very same day (or one day before) from any Ranger Station in the park.
Scenario 2: Let's say you want Summerland on the night of July 15. You show up at a Ranger Station that has the earliest opening hours only to find the permits are gone. How is this possible?
Did You Know?
In 1911, President William Howard Taft's touring car was the first vehicle to drive the newly-built road to Paradise. The road was very muddy, and the car had to be pulled through the upper portion by a team of mules. Learn more about Mount Rainier's transportation history at the following link: More...