Permits & Reservations

Cedar Grove Lodge. Photo by Kiel Maddox.


Four lodges operate within Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks, including two that are open year-round.

A tent on rocky ground

Campground Reservations

Make reservations at Reserve standard sites up to six months in advance, or group sites up to a year in advance.

Tents at a group site are surrounded by trees


Learn more about the parks' 14 campgrounds and choose one that's right for you.

A grassy mountain pass offers views of peaks in the distance. Photo by Rick Cain.

Wilderness Permits

Wilderness permit reservations are available for the 2017 season. Plan your trip today!

People stand near a sequoia with filming equipment

Film and Photography Permits

Information about who needs a permit and how to apply

A researcher holds up a core sample near an alpine lake

Scientific Research & Collection Permits

An annual permit is required to conduct scientific research or collecting in these parks. Learn more here.

A group of people in a cave room near a stream. Photo by Alison Taggart-Barone.

Crystal Cave

Explore underground! Tickets for Crystal Cave Tours are sold by our partner, the Sequoia Parks Conservancy.

A Sequoia Shuttle large bus. Photo by Alison Taggart-Barone.

Sequoia Shuttle

Trips inside the park are free, but you'll want to make reservations for trips from Visalia and Three Rivers.

Granite peaks

Mt. Whitney

Planning to climb Mt. Whitney? Look here for information to help you plan your hike.


Special Use Permits

A special park use is a short-term activity that takes place in a park area, and that:

  1. Provides a benefit to an individual, group, or organization rather than the public at large;
  2. Requires written authorization and some degree of management control from the National Park Service (NPS) in order to protect park resources and the public interest;
  3. Is not prohibited by law or regulation;
  4. Is not initiated, sponsored, or conducted by the NPS; and
  5. Is not managed under a concession contract, a recreation activity for which the NPS charges a fee, or a lease.

Examples include ash scattering, family reunions, church services, first-amendment demonstrations, political events, public assemblies, and weddings and other ceremonies.

For more information regarding special use permits or to determine if your activity requires one, please call (559) 565-4235 or e-mail us with the subject line "Attn: Special Use Permits."

Applications for permits should be submitted well in advance, preferably two-to-three months before the event, for consideration and processing.

Special Permit Applications and Guidelines

General Special Use Permit Application
Ash-Scattering Guidelines

Scattering cremated human remains ("cremains") in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks should be a small private activity, held away from high-visitor-use areas. A permit is not required, but all park regulations must be followed as outlined in the attachment.

Weddings In The Parks

General Wedding Permit Information
Wedding Locations
Wedding Permit Application

Demonstrations (also referred to as First Amendment Permits)

Demonstrations include picketing, speechmaking, marching, holding vigils or religious services, and all other like forms of conduct that involve the communication or expression of views or grievances, engaged in by one or more persons, the conduct of which is reasonably likely to attract a crowd or onlookers.

Demonstrations involving 25 people or less may be held without a permit within designated areas, provided that:

  1. The group is not merely an extension of another group already using the park for a demonstration or First Amendment activity.
  2. The group will not unreasonably interfere with other permitted demonstrations, special events, or park program activities.
  3. Hand-carried signs may be used but stages, platforms, or structures may not be used.
  4. While it is not mandatory, the organizer is requested to provide reasonable notice of the proposed event to the park superintendent, including whether or not there is any reason to believe there may be an attempt to disrupt, protest, or prevent the activity.
Demonstration / First Amendment Permit Application
Demonstration / First Amendment Location Maps

Commercial Use Authorizations

Commercial use authorizations (CUAs) are most commonly used for businesses that would like to operate guide services in the parks. A business wishing to conduct commercial guided tours must procure a CUA in advance and follow the terms and conditions of the authorization.

What types of activities are authorized in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks under CUAs?

  • Guided day hiking and backpacking services
  • Guided mountaineering and wilderness ski mountaineering services
  • Guided snowshoeing and skiing services
  • Guided fishing services
  • Guided photography workshops
  • Guided sightseeing van tours
  • Guided pack and saddle stock services

View our list of list of commercial use authorization holders for information about commercial tours and services in these parks. The National Park Service does not endorse any particular business.

Applying for a Commerical Use Authorization

If you are applying for a new CUA, please read the CUA Handbook. 2017 permit applications should be submitted in advance, preferably two months before an event, for consideration and processing.

2017 CUA Application and Instructions
Acknowledgement of Risk
Leave No Trace Video Clip
Monthly Use Report - Non-stock Operators
Sample Monthly Use Report - Non-stock Operators
Monthly Use Report - Stock Operators
Sample Monthly Use Report - Stock Operators
Annual Report for CUA Holders - due January 15, 2017

2018-2019 Wilderness CUAs

Wilderness applications for 2018-2019 are available. Applications for a CUA to operate within SEKI wilderness in 2018-2019 will only be available during a designated "open Season" - beginning July 17, 2017 and ending October 20, 2017. CUAs for commercial services in wilderness will be authorized for a two-year period, January 1, 2018 through December 31, 2019.
2018-2019 Wilderness CUA Application and Instructions

For More Information about CUAs

If you have questions about CUAs or to determine if your activity requires one, please call (559) 565-4235 or e-mail the Commercial Services Office with the subject line "CUA."


Other Permits and Licenses

Certain activities require permits because they may impact the park resources or affect the experience of other visitors. Permits are a tool used by the National Park Service to ensure oversight of certain activities and, in some instances, to recoup the costs of oversight.

The activities listed below require either a permit or license:

  • Fishing
    Fishing is permitted in most areas of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, and on adjacent national forests. Persons 16 years of age or older are required to have a California fishing license. Get copies of park-specific regulations at any visitor center. Licenses are not always available in park markets, so bring them with you or you may get one at Hume Lake (north of the Grant Grove area). Tackle is available at most park markets.
  • Caves
    For in-depth information about permits required to visit park caves (other than Crystal Cave), visit our web page about Caves/Karst Systems.

Last updated: September 13, 2017

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

47050 Generals Highway
Three Rivers, CA 93271


(559) 565-3341

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