The National Park Service (NPS) requires permits for business activities in NPS areas to protect the park visitor, the business operator, the federal government from liability, and to ensure that commercial activities in the parks are appropriate. Title 36 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Section 5.3 prohibits business activity in NPS areas without a permit.
Special Use Permit (SUP)
Isle Royale National Park will no longer require Special use permits (SUP) for non-commercial/non-profit groups who are conducting trips to the island for normal recreational activities. SUPs will still be issued for filming in the park and special events, such as weddings, or when conducting any activity that is out of the ordinary or may have an above normal affect on park resources or the wilderness experience (up to the discretion of park management). For an SUP, there is a $50 non-refundable application fee. SUP liability insurance may be required.
For-profit groups such as camps, outfitters, tour groups, and any operation providing goods, activities, or service to the general public within the park and which is undertaken for or results in compensation, monetary gain, benefit or profit to an individual, organization, or corporation must obtain a Commercial Use Authorization. For a CUA, there is a $200 non-refundable application fee. CUA liability insurance is required.
Commercial Filming or Still Photography
All commercial filming or commercial still photography requires a permit and associated fees. Commercial filming is defined as digital or film recording of a visual image or sound recording by a person, business, or other entity for a market audience, such as for a documentary, television or feature film, advertisement, or similar project. It does not include news coverage or visitor use.