Free is good, and free is what you’ll find on Monday, Martin Luther King Day, at any national park, monument, BLM site or wildlife refuge entry gate where an entrance fee is usually charged.
The same goes for day-use fees on U.S. Forest Service land such as parking areas where vehicles are usually required to display permits.
(Footnote to fans of moonlight strolls in uncommon places: Death Valley is hosting a Full Moon Festival Jan. 25-26 with ranger-led walks at night. Just be aware that entrance fees will be collected on those days.)
During no-entrance-fee events, several other fees remain in effect, including:
• campground fees
• advance reservation fees
• permit fees
• some tour fees
• concession fees
• cabin-rental fees
• group day-use fees
Later in 2013, national parks will not collect entrance fees on the following dates:
• April 22-26: the weekdays of National Park Week.
• Aug. 25: the 97th anniversary of the National Park Service.
• Sept. 28: National Public Lands Day.
• Nov. 9-11: Veterans Day weekend.
The Forest Service has different fee-free days than the Park Service. It will collect fees during National Park Week and the Park Service anniversary in 2013, but it will waive its day-use fees on 2 other days:
• June 1: National Trails Day.
• June 8: National Get Outdoors Day.
Plan. Go. See. Enjoy.
Grand Canyon National Park after snowfall on Jan. 12, viewed from Yavapai Point. (NPS photo by Michael Quinn)