Proposed user fee increase

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johnhens
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Proposed user fee increase

Post by johnhens » Fri Aug 19, 2016 12:51 pm


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Tom
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Re: Proposed user fee increase

Post by Tom » Fri Aug 19, 2016 1:39 pm

Interesting. My first blush/thought would be that this works out to the advantage of the hikers, at the cost of the day-trippers. I wonder if it will generate any additional or new revenue at all, or mainly just brings things into NPS alignment.
Clearly, anyone who 'plans' a trip, as in, what most backpackers and paddlers do, would do the quick math if it's cheaper to buy a pass for $60, or pay $7/day. For a party of four, if you stay more than one night (thus two days), buying a pass for one that covers the party would be cheaper than paying daily rate per hike. I would predict many IR hikers also hike other National Parks, and thus just upgrading/using a NPS annual pass would be most cost effective - And money I don't think ISRO would see.

I'm guessing day trippers wouldn't consider the change from $4 to $7 to be significant, but it might finally end the "why doesn't my pass work" question.
I'd be interested in what others think of the idea...

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conmcb25
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Re: Proposed user fee increase

Post by conmcb25 » Fri Aug 19, 2016 1:45 pm

I like it better. I usually go for a week or longer and go with my kid, so it would be cheaper just to get the yearly pass.


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Re: Proposed user fee increase

Post by Tortuga » Fri Aug 19, 2016 2:00 pm

I'm a backpacker who generally goes solo for 5 days at a time, twice a year, and I'm not upset about the increase.

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Ingo
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Re: Proposed user fee increase

Post by Ingo » Fri Aug 19, 2016 2:24 pm

Just commented on the NPS site:

"Sounds perfectly reasonable to me. Particularly like that it's aligning with the other passes.

The only down side is I could see it getting confusing for organized groups such as scouts, who would likely end up with a combination of passes and a different cost per person depending on how many end up coming. You may want to consider a simpler fee schedule for those groups: say $15 per person regardless of the number of days (equivalent to 4 people on a $60 pass)."


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Re: Proposed user fee increase

Post by Midwest Ed » Fri Aug 19, 2016 2:30 pm

As an newly minted old fart with a brand new $10 senior lifetime NPS pass, I have to say that old age is starting to pay off.
8 trips, 1975 x 2, 1976 x 2, 1978, 1985, 2000, 2013

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MikeT
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Re: Proposed user fee increase

Post by MikeT » Fri Aug 19, 2016 7:53 pm

I have bought a season pass every year for the past ? (I'm too lazy to think about) years. It is the minor cost of trips compared to the ferries, gear, time off work, hotels, etc. $4 per day seems very low to me for the park. I would actually round it off to $10 per day to make it easier and give the NPS more money. The permit fees are minor compared to the others costs. As far as groups go, I do not know. I am only speaking from my perspective.
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treeplanter
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Re: Proposed user fee increase

Post by treeplanter » Sat Aug 20, 2016 1:22 pm

Midwest Ed wrote:As an newly minted old fart with a brand new $10 senior lifetime NPS pass, I have to say that old age is starting to pay off.
Me too. We were out west back in May and that $10.00 senior pass saved me a bundle at both Zion and the Grand Canyon.


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Re: Proposed user fee increase

Post by Capt Don » Sun Aug 21, 2016 8:21 pm

I can't help but see this as a 75% increase regardless of the alternatives. I think the question should be where has the money gone and where will the increase go? When the user fee was created in '97, one of the biggest selling points for the "user fee" vs. "Entrance fee" was that over 90% of the money was going stay within Isle Royale for use specifically to maintain trails and docks in the park. I think anyone who has made visits to the park during the last twenty years would question if and how much of that money made it to it's intended destination. By going to the entrance fee format, I wonder what percentage of the money will return to Isle Royale or will it all end up in a general fund for all parks. I know very few people, daytrip or multi-day that had any opposition to the $4 fee. Perhaps leaving the fee as it is and strictly adhereing to the original plan would be the best benfit for Isle Royale and it's visitors.


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Re: Proposed user fee increase

Post by Donk_67 » Wed Aug 24, 2016 8:19 am

My initial thought on this was negative, increasing the cost to take a trip... however, buying the yearly pass makes sense for two and even better for three or four person party. It certainly isn't going to deter me from visiting again and if the added fees stay with the park, then it's well worth it in my mind. I'm going to have to think about this for next year's trip as I also plan a visit to Acadia in Maine; smart money says to buy the All Parks yearly pass, but conscience tells me to put money directly to IR.

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michigandave
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Re: Proposed user fee increase

Post by michigandave » Wed Aug 24, 2016 9:34 am

It wouldn't hold me back from going. They've got to keep pace with fees at other parks, plus it's a small price to pay when you look at the big picture of all the other costs (transportation etc) when you plan a trip there. Or I'll tag along with Donk_67 :) .

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hooky
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Re: Proposed user fee increase

Post by hooky » Wed Aug 24, 2016 10:24 am

Maybe the increase is going towards the transportation costs associated with introducing wolves. :D

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Re: Proposed user fee increase

Post by MikeT » Tue Aug 30, 2016 8:50 pm

Ok. As I said, I would pay the fee increase, no problem. But, after thinking about it and reading Captain Don's post, I thought about it a bit more.

Where would the fee increase go???? Would it go to Isle Royale directly or into a general Park Service fund???? Like the lottery "ear marked" for education which keeps getting bigger while school districts get less money??? And teachers get paid less???

Where would it go????

I want to see where it goes. Otherwise, I will donate/give the money to IRKPA or give it to ? directly.

Ok, back to Isle Royale. I cannot wait....
It does not care
about money
It is there
As I want to be
It is there

Want to be there
Forget here

(off my soapbox, ready for the island)
Mike T.
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head2north
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Re: Proposed user fee increase

Post by head2north » Wed Aug 31, 2016 6:54 am

MikeT wrote:Ok. As I said, I would pay the fee increase, no problem. But, after thinking about it and reading Captain Don's post, I thought about it a bit more.

Where would the fee increase go???? Would it go to Isle Royale directly or into a general Park Service fund???? Like the lottery "ear marked" for education which keeps getting bigger while school districts get less money??? And teachers get paid less???

Where would it go????
I am in same boat... Been a thought of mine for a while, especially for BWCA. We only pay $16 TOTAL per visit to Boundary Waters! I feel that I am ripping off the people
that take care of that wilderness. I could spend the whole summer using Boundary Waters campsites/trails for only $16. And only $4 a day at Isle Royale seems like such
a treat after realizing all of the maintenance per visitor.

But thinking about it. Where would the fees go? or is/will Isle Royale care always be subsidized by other parks due to low IR fees collected due to low IR visitor numbers?


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Re: Proposed user fee increase

Post by bobcat » Thu Sep 01, 2016 2:20 pm

I want to add to the discussion, what has just been done at Voyageurs National Park in MN. It used to be free (what a bargain!). Campsites were first-come, first served and permits were free - used to track usage. Starting in the fall of 2014, Voyageurs now charges a camping fee per night, depending on the campsite and reservations are required through Reserve-USA for each nights campsite. Cost of campsites varies depending on the size of the campsite, but most seem to be $18/night/site. A solo traveler incurs the same cost as a group of 15.......and has no flexibility in their schedule for weather, blisters, etc. Visitors have to print their permit/receipt with itinerary in advance of arriving at the park. It was a lot to swallow all at once, and is a big part of why I made it back to Isle Royale this summer- as the cost of a week solo kayaking at Voyageurs is now more than a week solo kayaking at Isle Royale including the ferry cost! Day visitors still pay no fees as far as I know.

If Isle Royale implements an ENTRANCE fee, this leaves the door open for a future system that includes reservations and camping fees for shelters and for tent campsites, and so on. Frankly, given the heavy crowding on the eastern end of the island this August, a reservation system is not such a bad idea! And, if I've paid for a shelter in advance, I can reasonably expect that there will be one there for me when I get there which gives me more leisure to enjoy the hike and take detours on the way to my night's campsite. You can argue that sometimes weather dictates whether a kayaker can move or not, but Voyageurs NP seems to have decided that this factor is minor compared to the assurance that comes with campsites reserved in advance.

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