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Washington Access Permits, National Forest Pass, National Park Pass, Discover Pass, Snopark Pass

Washington has all sorts of land use permits which I have observed many a confused hiker risk expensive tickets  at trail-heads upset to discover they had arrived with the wrong or no required permit.

Best hikes in winter (skiing in the cascades snow parks pass available at REI and the Mountaineers $40 or $80 (for a groomed trails sticker) otherwise low elevation hikes are the most likely to be snow free and passable Cougar Mountain, Tiger Mountain, Squak Mountain are all good trail systems for winter.

Snoparks Permit

Annual Sno-Parks Permit with groomed trails stamp. Good for WA and OR

Annual Sno-Parks Permit with groomed trails stamp. Good for WA and OR

Skiing in the Cascades at many National Forest winter entry points require Snow Parks pass available at REI and the Mountaineers $30 or $60 for a groomed trails sticker that mount inside your windshield (leaving a gummy residue in the off season). Purchase Snopark Pass Here

 

Northwest Forest Pass
Many year round National Forest trail-heads require  a Northwest Forest Pass.  These are essentially trail head parking passes and are available as a day pass $10 or annual $40? These are cards where the month and year of expiration are punched out.  They must be visible hanging off the rear view mirror at the trail head.  As a bonus they are also honored in Oregon.  Purchase NW Forest Pass Here.

NW Forest Pass

NW Forest Pass

Discover Pass
It was only a few years ago that Washington State Parks were open to the public and were completely free.  With the State budget cuts that is no longer the case.  Discover Passes are $10/day or $30 for an annual and can be purchased along with filling the Washington State Car tabs.  Much of the State Park Budget comes solely from the sales of these passes.  Recently the State Parks have been operating at a loss as a result expect more fees and closures/reductions of services. Purchase Discover Pass Here.

Discover Pass

Annual Discover Pass for WA State Parks

National Parks Pass
You will need a National Parks pass for Rainier National Park, The Olympics, but not the North Cascades National Park (one of the least visited and most rugged National Parks  in the lower 48).  If you are young at heart but older that 65? you are eligible for a Golden Age pass that will get you into National Parks and Monuments for free while offering discounts on campsites and other services.

Each National Park has a different day rate.  An annual pass for all the US National Parks is approx $80. Buy National Parks Pass Here.
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National Parks Pass

National Parks Annual Pass

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