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Contact: Catherine Bragaw, 301-491-6265
POTOMAC, Md.- The National Park Service proposes increasing entrance fees at both Great Falls Park (Va.) and Great Falls (Md.). This proposal also reinstates a reciprocal agreement, which would allow entry to parks on both sides of the Potomac River by presenting a valid pass or receipt purchased at either park.
“The entrance fees collected on both sides of the river at Great Falls are returned directly to the parks,” Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park (C&O Canal) Superintendent Kevin Brandt said. “Both C&O Canal and Great Falls Park use fee money to directly benefit visitors such as offering educational programs, taking care of trails and buildings and being good stewards of the parks’ nature and history.”
Proposed fees, which would be effective January 1, 2018, are as follows:
Current: $10/vehicle for 3 days. Valid only at park where fee was paid.
Proposed: $15/vehicle for 3 days. Valid at both parks.
Per Person (hikers/walkers, bicyclists):
Current: $5/person for 3 days. Valid only at park where pass was purchased.
Proposed: $7/person for 3 days. Valid at both parks.
Current: $10/motorcycle for 3 days. Valid only at park where pass was purchased.
Proposed: $10/motorcycle for 3 days. Valid at both parks.
Park Annual Pass:
Current: $30. Valid at both parks.
Proposed: No change.
While supporting park projects and programs, entrance fees provide visitors full access to services including park and trail maps, visitor center exhibits and information, ranger programs and restrooms. An annual pass is a great value for frequent visitors. There are also options that provide access to national parks across the country; more information at https://www.nps.gov/planyourvisit/passes.htm.
To comment on the proposal, please visit the following websites:
C&O Canal, Great Falls, Md., https://parkplanning.nps.gov/cocanalfees2018
George Washington Memorial Parkway (GWMP), Great Falls, VA., https://parkplanning.nps.gov/greatfallsfees
The public comment period will remain open until November 6, 2017.
During the past two years, entrance fees have supported many projects along the C&O Canal and Great Falls Park including:
- Ranger-led programming at both parks
- Rehabilitation of bathrooms at both parks
- Rehabilitation of Locks 3 and 4 at the C&O Canal
- Rehabilitation of Swains Lockhouse for the Canal Quarters Program at the C&O Canal
- Rehabilitation of Lock 2 of the Potomack Canal at Great Falls Park
The proposed change would bring the parks into full compliance with the National Park Service’s standard pricing. No other increases or new fees are proposed at this time. The last fee increase for these locations was in the summer of 2015.
About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for the 417 parks in the National Park System and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Visit us at www.nps.gov, on Facebook www.facebook.com/nationalparkservice, Twitter www.twitter.com/natlparkservice, and YouTube www.youtube.com/nationalparkservice.