Statewide – To honor the National Parks System’s 103rd birthday, free admission is given to both the national and Washington State Parks system on Sunday.
Single-day visitors to any state park on Sunday, Aug. 25, won’t need a Discover Pass or entrance fee to park or enter the areas.
The National Park Service was created on August 25, 1916, when President Woodrow Wilson signed the National Park Service Act.
The Discover Pass for Washington Park access was created following a 2011 law that also directed the state parks system to offer as many as 12 free days per year. According to the parks department, the pass was created “to offset steep reductions in general tax support for parks and other recreation lands and facilities”.
The Discover Pass offers you access to millions of acres of state recreation lands in Washington, including:
- More than 100 developed state parks
- More than 350 primitive recreation sites, including campgrounds and picnic areas
- Nearly 700 water-access points
- Nearly 2,000 miles of designated water and land recreation trails
- More than 80 natural areas
- More than 30 wildlife areas
These free days apply to day use only and do not allow for overnight camping.
The pass costs $30 a year or $10 a day.
After Sunday, two free days remain in 2019: Saturday, Sept. 28, which is National Public Lands Day, and Monday, Nov. 11, Veterans Day.
Not all national parks charge entrance fees, but at those that do there are several options including a private-vehicle pass that costs $30 and is valid for seven consecutive days or an annual pass.