Permit system for Angels Landing starting April 2022

fossana

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Jan 11, 2018
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605
Wishing You the Best!
Thanks, it's still easy to escape the hordes at least on foot. Frankly, I'm not sure how long I'll stay in the area. The pro-development forces are pushing to turn St George and vicinity into Vegas w/o consideration of water availability. Our tiny town has its own water supply and to date has pushed back on high density housing, but I don't know how long it will last.

@IntrepidXJ Thanks for the clarification on fees. That's messed up that they're pocketing the lottery fees. On the upside, the Red Rocks late exit climbing permits moved to recreation.gov and they only charge a $0.50 processing fee. The old system was voicemail-based and mildly painful.
 

kwc

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Mar 31, 2016
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618
I would rather see the permit fees go back to the parks/agencies instead of a private company. We should not be privatizing this.

To be clear, the permit fees do go to the agencies involved. It’s the reservation fee that the company keeps regardless of whether or not a permit is issued.

I can understand why the government has taken this route for a reservation system but they should have worked out a better deal for the application/reservation fees. Like split it 50/50.
 

Kmatjhwy

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Sep 23, 2016
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Do remember a time when there was hardly no permits anywhere. Then first permits and then fee permits. And then with these fee permits, thru the years a slow increase in the price of the fees. And like with this Rec.Gov site, it becomes a marriage between the Federal or State Government and a private firm or business. Paying a fee is one thing, but to obtain your permit or such, one has to do business with some private firm. Yuk! Now just in my opinion, this is Not Right! Many of the agencies, like the National Parks are indeed underfunded. But why do I have to get a permit where to get the permit I will have to do business with some private firm who will get the money instead of the park or such, which in many cases could use the money. And if one does not pay the fee then how much then one will get in trouble with the law so to speak.

Now there is this group ... The Western Slope No Fee Coalition. There website is ... westernslopenofee.org

This is one thing here in the western states in places like in Wyoming. One can still get back into the large expanses of Wilderness in these states without having some freaking permit or paying for some freaking permit from some private firm. Think of all those places here thru out the west outside of some park or preserve where the hoards of people do not go where one can still backpack, travel, see the area, and it is still without any permits or fees still. Guess am an old rebel in so many ways and this present society is soooo freaking insane and crazy in my opinion. Do think the Indigenous Peoples in the world had it right.

Again in my opinion. Wishing Everyone the Best!
 
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kwc

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Mar 31, 2016
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The government contract with recreation.gov pays the federal government $162 million over ten years. So the government does get some money out of the deal above and beyond the actual permit fees. Now where does that money go? I can’t find the answer to this but I imagine that it goes into the general fund and not into the various agencies funds/budgets.
 

John Morrow

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May 22, 2015
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Now there is this group ... The Western Slope No Fee Coalition. There website is ... westernslopenofee.org
Unless they advocate for tax revenue to cover the true cost to manage public lands, I cannot support this group. I am sure they will argue about gov't waste (overblown) and privatization (tax $$$ could halt this).
I believe in the premise. Fees can be seen as a regressive form of taxation. But we can't have both minimal taxes and no fees. It just doesn't add up to the cost to operate. I dream of fully funded agencies providing us excellent services by living wage earning professionals. It would be cheaper to the US Citizen than privatization, too. Would that be what this org is advocating? I'm too lazy to check.
 

utahastro

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Dec 30, 2021
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The permit system for Angels Landing is the least-bad solution, and I hope it will improve visitor safety as well as the experience of those who attempt the hike. But I also wonder about unintended consequences. I've thought of Angels Landing as a "sacrificial offering" whose extreme popularity prevents tourists from discovering and overwhelming the area's lesser-known wonders. Permit-only access to Angels Landing, combined with the long-term closure of the East Rim Trail at Weeping Rock, will really limit the hiking options for visitors to the main canyon and worsen overcrowding elsewhere, especially at times when the Narrows can't be hiked safely. If social media begins to seek out some of the region's under-the-radar hikes as alternatives to Angels Landing, it could easily spoil them. Kanarra Falls, which has already suffered a very similar fate, is an excellent cautionary tale.

At some point, the park will need to confront the reality that the current levels of visitation need to be greatly reduced, both to preserve the park's natural resources and to improve the visitor experience. (Like other locals, I rarely visit the main canyon because the overcrowding simply ruins the experience.)
 

balzaccom

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Sep 30, 2014
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The primary reason all of these reservations go through rec.gov is that the Park Service would rather spend its time managing the parks. and doesn't want to invest time, energy, and staff into a CRM software system and the computer time it takes to manage one. In Yosemite they've outsources the wilderness permits to the Yosemite Conservancy, who uses the funds to support the park.

Many States use rec.gov for the same reason, while others use ReserveAmerica.

With the increase in demand for visits to parks, this will only continue.
 

zionsky

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Dec 23, 2018
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No doubt the options in the main canyon are becoming increasingly limited. I foresee the park limiting overall visitation in the next decade. Hopefully the east entrance area development will help with overcrowding. Of course, the downside to that is it could ruin the solitude of the east side backcountry .
 

Kmatjhwy

Wilderness Wanderer
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Sep 23, 2016
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616
The thing as for Zion NP, do think the visitation on the area is only going to get worse. Think one day soon they will have to limit the people into the park. The main canyon already now is being overrun with people. Think about all the development happening around St. George and Hurricane. Then there is all of this development planned for the east side. Kanab and all the area wants a monetary piece of the action also. Then heard how in 5 years they want to extend the bike paths that are in the St. George and Hurricane all the way to Zion NP. Think about all the population like in Vegas, Southern California, and elsewhere that is sorta nearby to Zion. Think it is only gonna get worse. Personally am glad that I saw and visited Zion before it became crowded.
 

fossana

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Joined
Jan 11, 2018
Messages
605
The thing as for Zion NP, do think the visitation on the area is only going to get worse. Think one day soon they will have to limit the people into the park. The main canyon already now is being overrun with people. Think about all the development happening around St. George and Hurricane. Then there is all of this development planned for the east side. Kanab and all the area wants a monetary piece of the action also. Then heard how in 5 years they want to extend the bike paths that are in the St. George and Hurricane all the way to Zion NP. Think about all the population like in Vegas, Southern California, and elsewhere that is sorta nearby to Zion. Think it is only gonna get worse. Personally am glad that I saw and visited Zion before it became crowded.
A lot of us in the smaller towns around Zion are battling high density development and/or planning future exits before we get closed in. The mega Sun River developer is putting in 1200 houses in tiny Toquerville. Bike paths are our least worry and we need them around here, lest we get run off the road by a coal-rolling truck. I logged a ton of road and commuter bike miles in the Bay Area (not on bike paths), and the only place I've ever been hit on my bike was in UT.
 

SteveR

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Sep 22, 2016
Messages
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So glad that we went to Zion in October 2003. Along with all the other big-name hikes, we went to Angels and while I recall that we met others both coming and going- we actually ate lunch at the top with no one else around for the duration! We spent 5 days there at the campground, after arriving around noon and easily finding a spot with no reservation. Fast forward to our second visit in October 2014. Upon entering the east gate we were told that all campsites were already taken, and that the visitor centre parking lot was essentially gridlocked. We did a few un-official hikes on the Eastside, and camped in the Smithsonian Butte area, but after 3 days we felt the need to get out of there and leave the zoo behind. Still have some Eastside stuff on the to-do list, and after our positive experience (including way less people, everywhere) on our mid-November desert trip this year (5 weeks later than usual), I'm guessing that later in the fall trips will be the norm for us in the future.
 
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