Wilderness (Backpacking) Reservations

Wilderness Camping Permits are required for all overnight stays in the Olympic National Park wilderness (backcountry) year-round. If you have any questions, WIC staff are available by phone 7 days a week at (360) 565-3100 between the hours of 9 AM and 5 PM Pacific.

  • All Wilderness Camping Permits must be obtained in advance. There will be no self-registration available for 2021, trailhead permits are no longer available.

  • There will be no walk-up permits available at any Wilderness Information Center (WIC). All WIC locations are closed to the public but WIC staff will be available to answer telephone calls and assist with permit questions/issues.
  • All Wilderness Camping Permits must be reserved on Recreation.gov through the Olympic National Park Wilderness Permit page prior to the planned trip. If you are having trouble booking a trip online call the WIC for assistance.
  • As of July 12th, 2021, quotas that were implemented in the Olympic Wilderness due to the COVID 19 pandemic have been lifted. Availability will no longer be limited in many wilderness camping areas. Areas that historically operated on a quota basis, such as Sol Duc / Seven Lakes Basin, Grand Valley, Royal Lake, the Cape Alava / Sand Point area, and others, will be unaffected by this change. No additional availability will open for these areas. Consult the Olympic Wilderness Trip Planner Map to determine which areas operate on a quota basis. Quota sites are color coded red/yellow.
  • 100% of camp area availability will be available online, there will be no availability saved for walk-up.
  • Reservations can be made up to 6 months in advance. Reservations can be made up to the start date of your trip, dependent on availability.
  • Reserved permits will be issued by Wilderness Information Center staff begining 5-7 days before the start of your trip. Once the permit has been issued you will be able to log in to your account and print the permit yourself.
  • Please note that bear canisters are required at many wilderness camp areas. Due to COVID-19 we highly encourage wilderness users to provide their own bear canisters. Bear canisters may be available for loan on a limited basis at the Wilderness Information Centers.
  • For current wilderness conditions, please visit the trail conditions page.
  • Keep in mind Leave No Trace ethics in order to help protect the park and keep the backcountry clean for other hikers and wildlife.

As of July 12th, 2021, quotas that were implemented in the Olympic Wilderness due to the COVID 19 pandemic have been lifted. Availability will no longer be limited in many wilderness camping areas. Areas that historically operated on a quota basis, such as Sol Duc / Seven Lakes Basin, Grand Valley, Royal Lake, the Cape Alava / Sand Point area, and others, will be unaffected by this change. No additional availability will open for these areas. Consult the Olympic Wilderness Trip Planner Map to determine which areas operate on a quota basis. Quota sites are color coded red/yellow.

Quota Area:
For the following wilderness camp areas, overnight use limits are in effect to help minimize human impacts and provide a quality wilderness experience. These limitations are reflected in the availability of groups and backpackers listed on the Recreation.gov website.

100% of the quota may be reserved in advance for:

Important information about reservations & quota areas:

  • Camping is only permitted in designated sites within quota areas.
  • In quota areas, deviation from your permit itinerary is not allowed, except in cases of emergency.
  • Campsites at larger camp areas are not individually assigned but are first-come, first-served for permit holders.
  • In other areas (brown campsites on Trip Planner Map), permits are not limited and can be picked up at a permit office the day of or day before your hike. Campsites are first-come, first-served.
  • In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, all wilderness camping areas currently have a set quota.
  • Visit the Olympic National Park Wilderness Permits page on Recreation.gov for current permit availability.
  • For current wilderness conditions, please visit the trail conditions page.
  • Visit the Olympic National Park Wilderness Permits page on Recreation.gov to make a reservation. Reservations can be made up to 6 months in advance on a rolling basis. Reservations will become available on the website at 10:00 AM EST/7:00 AM PST.

  • While many camp areas will be reservable year round, reservations for high elevation areas will be limited to a shorter summer season (typically mid July until mid October). If you are attempting a high elevation route outside of the summer season, please contact the WIC directly at (360) 565-3100.
  • If you would like to book a cross country trip (e.g. Bailey Range) or a campsite that is not listed on Recreation.gov, please contact the WIC at (360) 565-3100.
  • For current wilderness conditions, please visit the trail conditions page.

Fee Policies:
Recreation Fee:

  • Adults (16 and older) - $8 per person per night

  • Youth (15 and under) - free

  • Annual Olympic National Park Wilderness Pass – free for pass holder only

Reservation Fee:

  • A $6.00 non-refundable reservation fee is required for each overnight permit reserved including Annual Olympic National Park Wilderness Pass holders.

Cancellation & Change Policies:
Cancellation Policy:

  • If you cancel your reservation 7 or more days in advance of your trip your camping fee will be refunded, but not the flat $6 reservation fee. If canceled within 7 days there is no refund. The first day of your trip is not included in the 7 day window.

Change Policy:

  • You can change your party size or campsite location, if space is available, until the day before your trip or before a Wilderness Information Center issues your permit. Permits are typically issued 3-7 days before a trip. Additional fees may apply. Once your permit is issued only a ranger at a Wilderness Information Center can make changes. Call or email the Wilderness Information Center to modify an issued permit. Due to Covid-19 and limited staffing last minute changes may not be possible.

No Show Policy:

  • If you do not cancel and decide not to use your reservation, none of the fees will be refunded. Please cancel your reservation if you are unable to use it as this opens quota space for others.

Olympic National Park Annual Wilderness Pass Policy:

  • The Olympic National Park Annual Wilderness Pass is $45 per person. The pass covers per night camping fees for 12 months from the month of purchase for the individual pass holder; permits and reservations are still required for pass holders.
  • Annual Olympic National Park Wilderness Pass holders do not have to pay the $8 per person per night fee. However, the Wilderness Pass does not cover the flat $6 reservation fee.
  • To purchase your Wilderness Annual Pass(es), please use this link: https://pay.gov/public/form/start/129856631
    • For Permit Type, select 'Self-Registration Permit'.
    • After receiving the payment confirmation email from Pay.gov, please email us at olym_wic@nps.gov with your confirmation number and the mailing address to send the pass(es).


How Wilderness Permit Fees are used

  • Wilderness use fees help support visitor management projects like trail maintenance, pit toilets, revegetation projects, and Wilderness Information Centers.

On March 18, 2019 Wilderness online permit reservations were implemented on Recreation.gov. Below is some regarding this program.

About Recreation.gov

  • Recreation.gov is the online reservation system used for permits and camping for over 3,500 federal land management facilities. The website was first launched in 1995 with a major upgrade in 2018.

  • In addition to wilderness camping permits, Olympic NP currently utilizes Recreation.gov at several frontcountry campgrounds. We will also be implementing digital park entrance passes on the website in the coming months.

About Online Wilderness Permits at OLYM

  • The Recreation.gov reservation system allows backpackers to check the availability of sites in real time, plan their trip and receive immediate confirmation, and streamline the park's wilderness permit reservations.

  • Reservations are accepted online at www.recreation.gov

  • In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Wilderness Camping Permits for the 2021 season all wilderness camping areas have a set quota.

  • Wilderness camping fees are $8 per person per night for those 16 or older (15 and younger are free) plus a $6 permit fee. For example, the fee for 2 adults camping for 4 nights will be $70 ($64 camping fee + $6 reservation fee).

  • The $6 reservation fee is to cover the Recreation.gov contract cost to maintain the permit system.

  • Permit reservations can be made up to 6 months in advance on a rolling basis.

  • Olympic Annual Wilderness Passes are $45 per person. Wilderness Passes cover one individual's per night camping fees for 12 months from the month of purchase; permits and reservations are still required with Wilderness passes.

  • Annual Olympic National Park Wilderness Pass holders do not have to pay the $8 per person per night fee. However the Wilderness Pass does not cover the flat $6 reservation fee.

  • Wilderness Passes can be purchased over the phone by calling any Wilderness Information Center during open hours and the pass will be mailed to you.

  • Wilderness Camping Permit Change and Refund Policy. You may make changes in Recreation.gov to your permit up to 2 days in advance of your trip and your camping fee will be adjusted accordingly. If you cancel your trip up to 7 days in advance of your trip your camping fee will be refunded, but not the $6 reservation fee. If canceled within 7 days there is no refund.

 
Mountain lake
Lunch Lake -Seven Lakes Basin

NPS Photo Brendan Fluckiger

Last updated: July 12, 2021

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

600 E. Park Avenue
Port Angeles, WA 98362

Phone:

(360) 565-3130

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