Explain the forest pass system?

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Webfoot
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Re: Explain the forest pass system?

Post by Webfoot » July 15th, 2019, 9:35 am

The fee is not for parking.

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Water
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Re: Explain the forest pass system?

Post by Water » July 15th, 2019, 12:28 pm

astute observation Webfoot. In fact under FLREA guidelines (http://uscode.house.gov/view.xhtml?path ... ion=prelim) the FS/BLM etc absolutely cannot charge solely for parking, they're prohibited from doing so. This limitation section is mentioned before all other details of site and agency specific allowances.
§6802.(d)(1)(A)

(d) Limitations on recreation fees
(1) Prohibition on fees for certain activities or services
The Secretary shall not charge any standard amenity recreation fee or expanded amenity recreation fee for Federal recreational lands and waters administered by the Bureau of Land Management, the Forest Service, or the Bureau of Reclamation under this chapter for any of the following:

(A) Solely for parking, undesignated parking, or picnicking along roads or trailsides.
You'd probably like to see item (D) in the same list as (A).
(D) For persons who are driving through, walking through, boating through, horseback riding through, or hiking through Federal recreational lands and waters without using the facilities and services.
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Water
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Re: Explain the forest pass system?

Post by Water » July 15th, 2019, 12:37 pm

Parking then hiking = where are you afoul of the law in forest service managed lands, regardless of what the FS tries to tell you about needing a NWFP?

Not allowed to charge just to park. Not allowed to charge for walking through without amenities use. So go park and hike.
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Water
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Re: Explain the forest pass system?

Post by Water » July 15th, 2019, 12:45 pm

additionally I would love to even find where in the statute the provision is for say the pass on Mt. Adams.. or St. Helens (though it specifies standard amenity fee may be charged in national volcanic monuments, however that is in conflict with the no fee of any kind solely for parking and passing through). The 9th circuit judge dug into all of this and ruled in the logic I state above. You don't need it to park. You don't need it to pass through. Ergo, you do not need it to park and hike. To suggest otherwise would be in direct conflict, suggesting you are either paying to park (prohibited) or paying to pass through (prohibited), both expressly and directly prohibited under FLREA.
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BigBear
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Re: Explain the forest pass system?

Post by BigBear » July 15th, 2019, 1:18 pm

The initial question concerned backpacking in the Willamette NF next year...which means the NW Forest Pass may not apply to your situation since the Willamette NF wildernesses are going to a trail-by-trail permit system. They are still working out the draconian complexities to ensure maximum revenue, minimal communication tot he public and just plain good ole abuse of power. Okay, maybe that not fair...or maybe it is. We'll see next summer which interpretation is more accurate.

The current NW Forest Pass is indeed a parking permit. You can pull out any reg you want to disagree with this assessment, but the plain truth is that if USFS finds your car at one of the designated THs without a pass, they will put a ticket on your window. They do not need to try to figure out if you are backpacking, dayhiking, hunting, fishing, or just relieving yourself behind a tree...they put a ticket under your windshield wiper and drive to the next trailhead.

The next ripple in this so-called enforcement of the "unambiguously prohibited" pass (see Adams vs USFS; and Bark vs USFS) is that if the TH is near a campground (Wahtum Lake or Fish Creek on the Clackamas River or Eightmile Creek), the concessionaire will give you a ticket EVEN IF YOU HAVE A NW FOREST PASS. They want their cut too!

And this is just the national forests. State parks, BLM, national parks/monuments have their hands out too.

The Discover Pass (Washington) is ONLY A PARKING FEE. Go to Ilwaco and try to use the Discover Pass to get into either the interpretive center or the lighthouse. The rangers will gladly let you know your parking pass does not cover any other amenities.

So, enjoy your public lands. Just have your wallet ready.

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kepPNW
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Re: Explain the forest pass system?

Post by kepPNW » July 15th, 2019, 1:27 pm

Water wrote:
July 15th, 2019, 12:37 pm
Not allowed to charge just to park. Not allowed to charge for walking through without amenities use. So go park and hike.
I believe the USFS considers the paved "trails" and viewing platforms around JRO to be amenities under this law. That said, there is *no* reason to hang a NWFP in the car there! None at all. It's not even signed as such. The only thing the pass is used for at JRO is to obtain a wristband, which in turn permits you into the visitor center and free roaming on the interpretive trails.
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Guy
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Re: Explain the forest pass system?

Post by Guy » July 15th, 2019, 2:16 pm

BigBear wrote:
July 15th, 2019, 1:18 pm

The next ripple in this so-called enforcement of the "unambiguously prohibited" pass (see Adams vs USFS; and Bark vs USFS) is that if the TH is near a campground (Wahtum Lake or Fish Creek on the Clackamas River or Eightmile Creek), the concessionaire will give you a ticket EVEN IF YOU HAVE A NW FOREST PASS. They want their cut too!
I can't speak for the others but there has been an update to Wahtum Lake weather it was due to regular complaints from people like myself or some other reason but you can now park at Wahtum lake with a NWFP and the concessionaire has to honor it. Providing they don't catch you loitering in the "Day use area"
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McCarter
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Re: Explain the forest pass system?

Post by McCarter » July 15th, 2019, 2:27 pm

In getting back to OPs question. You can grab a NW forest pass for $30 and an Oregon State Parks pass for something around the same price. That covers most of the fun stuff in Oregon. If you don't use State Parks then don't bother.

I think there are valid arguments for not getting a pass, however, I typically buy one. I certainly wish we lived in a country with better funding for our public lands, or public goods in general, however we are seemingly destined to live free and die unsatisfied. But hey, gotta love the low tax base! My 30$ a year hopefully helps the USFS in some way and eases any stress related to getting a ticket or relying on dicta from a 9th circuit opinion (yes, I am unfortunately an attorney).

This doesn't mean I think the USFS does a great job of managing our national forests. I can both not agree with things they do and hope my $30 means some good work still gets done.

I guess the bottom line is, do what makes you feel comfortable.

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Water
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Re: Explain the forest pass system?

Post by Water » July 15th, 2019, 2:31 pm

kepPNW wrote:
July 15th, 2019, 1:27 pm
Water wrote:
July 15th, 2019, 12:37 pm
Not allowed to charge just to park. Not allowed to charge for walking through without amenities use. So go park and hike.
I believe the USFS considers the paved "trails" and viewing platforms around JRO to be amenities under this law. That said, there is *no* reason to hang a NWFP in the car there! None at all. It's not even signed as such. The only thing the pass is used for at JRO is to obtain a wristband, which in turn permits you into the visitor center and free roaming on the interpretive trails.
I agree. And that is the kind of amenity to pay for--a visitor center with movies and other infomatics, asphalt trails grandma can drive her rascal on and I can push little jimmy in a stroller no problem and look at our public lands before we throw a mcdonalds cup out the window and roll coal on our way out of the monument. That said, is there any way to access the unpaved hiking trails that branch off of the paved hiking paths, without hiking the pavement or coming up from coldwater? The little cut path at the back of the parking lot is paved so it's like you're kind of captured. It also says don't go off the trail so it's not like you can 'technically' walk off the pavement?


BigBear, where are you seeing tickets? I've been trying to get one for ages.. yes most people at the FS aren't even aware of the court cases. You know, just following orders, my manager says we ticket.. so.. I ticket
Last edited by Water on July 15th, 2019, 2:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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retired jerry
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Re: Explain the forest pass system?

Post by retired jerry » July 15th, 2019, 2:34 pm

well said

the amount of complaining about $30 fee exceeds it's importance compared to other problems

in my opinion

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