ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - Those traveling to the Denali National Park and Preserve will notice a small increase in the fee money required to enter, starting this summer.
According to the National Parks Service, after May 1, 2019, the fee to enter will be $15 per person for a week-long pass, up $5 from the previous fee of $10. The Denali annual pass which allows re-entry year-round for a group of four people, was raised from $40 to $45.
This fee is less than when the increase was initially announced in 2017, when NPS started the public comment period on a proposal impacting one of Alaska's premier parks.
The plan by then-Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke drew widespread opposition from lawmakers and governors of both parties, who said the higher fees could exclude many Americans from enjoying national parks. The agency received more than 109,000 comments on the plan, most of them opposed.
At that time, the fee was doubling parking fees to $70 per vehicle, a rise more than doubling the current $30 and $25 amounts. That was scrapped last year in favor of the plan boosting fees at 17 popular parks by $5, up from the current $30 but far below the figure Interior proposed initially.
The other parks impacted by the May fee increase include:
Sequoia & Kings Canyon
NPS wrote last year that the increased fee money would remain in with NPS, and help "ensure a quality experience for all who visit."
"In fact, 80 percent of entrance fees stays in Denali and is devoted to spending that supports the visitor. The park shares the other 20 percent of entry fee income with other national parks," NPS wrote in a 2018 news release.