Edit: Passes are now available for sale online. You should also be able to find them at a dealer. You will pay about 5.00 extra, in addition to the 30.00 charge. Remember: Each of your vehicles will need a hang tag. If you want to avoid the extra fees, you can purchase one from a park office or a ranger at a staffed park. Otherwise, there is no way to avoid those add-on dollars until the fall, when you’ll be able to get one at the same time you renew your vehicle tabs.
Well, this is a good news/bad news sort of thing.
The bad news is it’s going to cost you 30.00 a year per vehicle to visit your favorite Washington State Parks and other facilities. The good news, given the state’s current budget mess, is that this new fee will at least keep these places open. Many had been threatened with closure, and it would have been such a shame to see these treasures fall prey to vandalism and worse.
The legislation just passed, and you’ll need to have a new Washington State Discover Pass beginning July 1st if you plan on visiting a state park or any other state maintained recreation land. A daily pass is 10.00, so I think for most families the 30.00 yearly pass will be a better deal (you’ll also pay a few more dollars to the place where you buy it, and keep in mind, you’ll need one for each car you plan on taking).
Now, there are some exceptions to the requirement, for example, if you’re camping. You can also get one for free if you put in 24 hours of approved volunteer work. The Washington State Discover Pass website really is very well designed, so I’m just going to send you there to check out what sites are included in this program and get the answers to your other questions.
Thanks to Nicole at thenorthwestcamper for pointing out the per vehicle charge. I had this post ready to go and had missed that detail. If you enjoy camping in Washington and Oregon, Nicole’s site has tons of fun camping reviews and ideas for you.
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