Voyageurs National Park’s Campsite Reservation and Fee Program Begins April of 2014
Contact: Tawnya Schoewe, 218-283-6670
International Falls, MN – In 2013, Voyageurs National Park completed a three year Civic Engagement process with the public to determine if campsite reservations and fees were warranted for the park. After holding multiple public meetings and gathering public comments park officials determined the majority of the public supported the program. Despite a moratorium on new or modified fees, the Director's office of the National Park Service approved a reservation system and fee rates for Voyageurs National Park.
Over the past several months park officials have worked in conjunction with www.recreation.gov to come up with a 4 phase process for the implementation of the park's campsites, houseboat sites, and boats on interior lakes program. A phase in process will allow park staff to ensure all aspects of the system provide the intended service to visitors. It also allows a season for visitors to get used to the changes. "During civic engagement a lot of people requested we phase this process over a couple years so that visitors would become accustomed to the process. We fully agree with their input." Superintendent Mike Ward commented.
Doing so will give the park time to monitor how these 34 sites are used prior to continuing implementation. Ward stated that, "This is a large project and will take time and monitoring to achieve success.
Park officials placed a great deal of time into determining the first 34 sites selected and based their decision on visitor use, location, and size of the sites. The 34 reservable sites will be marked with "reservation only" signs for the first year.
The park is working on implementing temporary computer kiosks, at park visitor centers, to assist with walk-in reservations. Reservations at the kiosks will only be for that day. All other reservations will need to be made in advance on-line or by phone at www.recreation.gov or by calling the National Call Center at 1-877-444-6777. Advance reservations are available until midnight the night before the visit. Reservations are by credit card only.
The fee structure for sites was based on the amenities at the sites. The fees collected will go one-hundred percent back into the park. The fee structure is as follows:
Small campsite with no tent pads - $16
Small campsite with 1 tent pad - $18
Small campsite with 2 tent pads - $20
Large campsites – $24
Boats on interior lakes rentals - $12
Houseboats - $10
Backcountry campsites (regardless of tent pads) $16
The dates and sites selected to go live with www.recreation.gov are as follows in 4 phases.
Visitors to the park will be able to make reservations for these sites starting 10:00 am, April 1, 2014.
Reservations required with www.recreation.gov for:
April 15, 2014 through October 15, 2014
·All rentals canoes and rowboats on interior lakes
May 15, 2014 through September 15, 2014
·All Backcountry (interior) campsites
·34 Frontcountry (main lake) campsites; see list below
Also included are all canoes, rowboats, and Backcountry camping sites in the interior of the Kabetogama Peninsula.
All other sites will remain first-come, first-served in 2014. However, a free overnight permit is still required for all first-come, first-served sites within the park and are available at the following boat launches: Rainy Lake Visitor Center, Kabetogama Lake Visitor Center, Ash River Visitor Center, Crane Lake Ranger Station, and the Crane Lake MN DNR launch.
September 16, 2014 through May 14, 2015
·All rental canoes and rowboats on interior lakes
·Reservation required with www.recreation.gov
·The park will no longer have self-registration permit stations
April 15, 2015 through October 15 each year
·All rental canoes and rowboats on the interior
May 15, 2015 through September 15 each year
·Reservations will be available 6 months in advance and will open November of each year
May 15, 2015 through September 15 each year
·No camping, houseboating, boat rentals without a reservation
·Reservations will be available on April 1, 2015 for houseboating
About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's 401 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at www.nps.gov.