What a waste

balzaccom

Member
Joined
Sep 30, 2014
Messages
466
We're just back from a rather impromptu trip to Death Valley and the Grand Canyon, and we were stunned by how many empty campsites we saw at the Grand Canyon.

When we made our reservation, there were only a few sites available...and when we checked later, even those were gone. And yet every night we were there, at least 30% of the campsites were empty. No cars, no RVs, no tents, no people.


What a waste. We know there were people looking for a site that were turned away because all the sites were booked. And yet the site next to us was never occupied in the four days were were there. Sure, there was a tag that said it was reserved for someone for the entire time. But they never showed up. And the campsite sat empty for all four days.


There has to be a better way to manage this.
 
Joined
Jan 18, 2014
Messages
51
Nope...it brings in the money this way, yet, there is no real reason money wise to cancel your reservation if ya don’t need it...they should charge a flat 10 dollar fee for cancellations within 48 hrs or so, but they keep alot of th fees even if you cancel weeks in advance...
 

Wanderlust073

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Joined
Oct 30, 2016
Messages
798
Any chance the NPS is trying to force social distancing?

Wondered this too. RMNP is still planning on requiring reservations and operating at reduced capacity this coming year (and supposedly requiring reservations forever now). Maybe NPS is purposely leaving gaps.

At any rate, sucks for someone who wanted those sites but sure sounds like a bonus for you to have it all to yourself more or less.
 

Reef&Ruins

Colorado Plateau is calling...
Joined
Feb 3, 2017
Messages
597
I saw something like this pre-COVID at Olympic NP. All these sites with nothing on them and it seemed no one would show up for them. They did not have the usual reserved sign on them from rec.gov, just the little tag from the iron ranger kiosk. What I think was happening was people would come in, get a site, but then head out backpacking until partway through the weekend but still have site when they returned before heading out of the park the next day.
 

balzaccom

Member
Joined
Sep 30, 2014
Messages
466
These all had reserved tags, with names and dates on them,. Many people showed up to camp, left in the middle of the night when they found out how cold it was, and never came back. Or they never showed up at all. But their tag stayed on the site, and the site stayed empty for days afterwards. It was just people changing their plans and not letting anyone know---so the sites sat empty.

Very sad, Also, note that this is the same system that many parks are going to use this summer for wilderness permits!
 

SteveR

Member
Joined
Sep 22, 2016
Messages
465
We frequently noticed the same in Alberta last summer. I think it was the result of the general outdoor frenzy, with people going online when reservations opened up and booking more than they actually needed, then months later cherry-picking their couple of days and just writing off the rest, or not even showing up at all. Hoarding, if you will. There are rules against this behaviour, but I don't think there was any real effort on the part of campground staff to release these vacant sites to other campers, with people still being directed to overflow areas which are usually just gravelled parking lots with an outhouse. Shame!
 

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