Mark your calendars! There are fewer days you can enjoy national parks for free next year.
The National Park Service announced there would only be four fee-free days in 2018.
In 2017, there were 10 free days. And the year before that, as the National Park Service turned 100 years old, there were 16.
The fee-free dates in 2018 include:
- Jan. 15: Martin Luther King Jr. Day
- April 21: First day of National Park Week
- Sept. 22: National Public Lands Day
- Nov. 11: Veterans Day
The sharp decrease in the number of fee-free days comes as the National Park Service faces a maintenance backlog of more than $11 billion.
The NPS is also considering a fee increase at 17 parks — including the Grand Canyon —during the parks’ busiest five-month periods.
The entrance fee would be $70 per vehicle, up from $30 for a weekly pass.
The fees would also increase to $50 per motorcycle and $30 per person on bike or foot, up from $25 per motorcycle and $15 per individual.
Estimates suggest the fee hike could increase national park revenue by $70 million per year, according to the NPS.
The public has until Dec. 22 to comment on the fee increase decision.