Questions and Answers about Forest Service Recreation fees Recreation Program Manager for the Pacific Northwest Region Do I need a recreation pass to visit
a national forest? Biro: No; however, some of our day use recreation
sites do require fees, such as picnic areas, boat launches, visitor centers at Mt. St.
Helens. Where can I go for free?
Biro: Well, the majority of National Forests in Oregon and Washington. Unless you go to
one of those specific developed recreation sites, they are free. What will the recreation pass provide for
the forest visitor? Biro: Well, the visitor will enjoy several
amenities at the recreation sites, such as restrooms, picnic tables, garbage service.
But, the monies generated from the sale of recreation passes go for maintaining trails
and providing these amenities. Besides Discover Your Northwest,
where can I buy a recreation pass? Biro: Passes are used in lieu of paying your
on-site recreation fees, and you can use those at the day use sites and they’re available
through Forest Service offices and local vendors, such as Bi-Mart, REI, and Big Five sporting
good stores. Those passes are also used, depending upon
which one you buy, for National Parks entrance fees, Fish and Wildlife refuges, and day-use
sites for the Bureau of Land Management. Where you would recommend visiting? Biro: Well, I guess it depends where you want
to go. If you want to be hiking, and you happen to be in the Portland metro area, the Columbia
River Gorge as well as the Mount Hood National Forest, have several hiking trails within
an hour’s drive of Portland. If you want to go up to Mt. St. Helens and visit the Johnston
Ridge Observatory, you can go up to see that area, which is a little more than an hour
and a half to two hour drive. EEO disclaimer