Commercial Use Authorizations

What is a CUA?

A commercial use authorization (CUA) allows an individual, group, company, or other for-profit entity to conduct commercial activities and provide specific visitor services within a national park unit. The National Park Service (NPS) issues CUAs to manage a wide-range of commercial visitor services in addition to road-based commercial tours. Depending on the park, this can include guided mountaineering and backpacking, bike tours, kayak trips, photography workshops, scuba diving classes, fishing trips, and much more.

Federal law mandates the NPS issue CUAs only for commercial activities and visitor services that:

  • are determined to be an appropriate use of the park,
  • will have minimal impact on park resources and values, and
  • are consistent with the park purpose, management plans, policies, and regulations
National Park Servive Commercial Use Authorization webpage

Want to conduct business inside Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore?

Commercial Use Authorizations (CUAs) are required for all commercial visitor services provided by a company or organization not based in the park.

  • CUAs are valid for the calendar year only. Companies will need to reapply each year.
  • No renewal reminders are sent. Please refer to this website for any relevant updates.
  • Make sure to apply 4 weeks before your first trip/event. Expect your permit to be ready approximately 30 days from when you submit a complete packet.
  • Please be sure to fill in ALL the blanks in your application forms. Incomplete packets will not be processed until complete. Applications cannot be expedited.
  • You must be in possession of a valid permit if you wish to conduct business inside Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore.

A complete application packet must include:

  1. The general application form, typed and filled out completely. We do not accept typed signatures so please print, sign and scan the signature page. Application Form 10-550 (437.44 KB pdf)
    • Fill out one Application Form 10-550 for each service you wish to provide. Each Application form must have an accompanying application packet. Each application form must be typed.
    • Note: question #10 requires companies to list all vehicles used to transport clients. If vehicles will be rented, please enter "unknown" in the license plate column and indicate in the last column that you will be renting a vehicle. If you are contracting out, please indicate from which company you are chartering.
  2. Visitor Acknowledgement of Risk Form (196.46 KB pdf)
  3. Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore Commercial Water Vessel Roster (139.51 KB)
  4. Certificate of Insurance from your insurance agent for the required amounts Two types of insurance are required:
    • Commercial General Liability
    • Commercial Automobile Liability
  5. Application Fee
  6. Annual Report for the previous year (2018) if you have operated in the park before: Annual Report 10-660 (170.60 KB pdf.) Do not leave any information blank.
Note: Applications are processed in the order in which they are received. Incomplete applications are not placed in the queue until they are complete.

Submitting your CUA application packet:

Email submission: e-mail us

You may also mail the complete application packet to:

Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore
Attn: Chief Rangers Office
PO Box 40
N8391 Sand Point Road (UPS, FedEx, etc.)
Munising, MI 49862

We highly recommend that you email your complete application packet. This reduces wait time and allows us to better track your case. Please wait at least two weeks before checking your permit status. We recommend you get your complete application in as early as possible. Complete applications are processed in four weeks on average. No applications can be expedited. There are no exceptions.


Last updated: August 27, 2019

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 40
Munising, MI 49862


(906) 387-3700

Contact Us