Get free entry to all US National Park sites on Thursday

Get free entry to all US National Park sites on Thursday

(CNN) — National parks have been called “America’s best idea,” and on Thursday, they could end up being America’s best bargain.

August 4 marks another free entry day to all National Park Service sites that usually charge an entrance fee.

It passed in 2020 and “improves infrastructure and expanding recreation opportunities in national parks and other public lands,” according to the National Park Service.

So what’s free?

Visitors flock to Cadillac Mountain in Acadia National Park in Maine to watch the sunrise.

Shawn Patrick Ouellette/Portland Portland Press Herald/Getty Images

All entrance fees. That includes not only those marquee national parks such as Yellowstone and Yosemite, but all other types of sites the NPS manages:

Click here for a full listing of every NPS site, which it calls “units.”

One catch: “The entrance fee waiver for fee-free days does not cover amenity or user fees for activities such as camping, boat launches, transportation or special tours,” the NPS says.

Off-country planning

The Temple of Osiris, a rock formation, is just one of the amazing sites at the Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah.  A private vehicle pass, good for seven days, is usually $35 there.

The Temple of Osiris, a rock formation, is just one of the amazing sites at the Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah. A private vehicle pass, good for seven days, is usually $35 there.

Daniel Slim/AFP/Getty Images

If you’re not much of a planner, it might be a good idea to develop the habit — particularly if you want to see a popular NPS site on a free day.

Extra fees, advanced reservations, special passes, lotteries and caps on the number of visitors are all in play in 2022.
If you have a particular site you wish to visit, check its website first. For instance, some major roads were closed at Mojave National Preserve in California because of flood damage (yes, desert regions can get flood damage, too).

Missed out on this free day? There will be two more free days in 2022: Saturday, September 24, and Friday, November 11 (Veterans Day).

Top image: Grand Teton National Park outside Jackson, Wyoming. (Photo by George Frey/Getty Images)

.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.