Vets get free access to Public Lands

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Vets get free access to Public Lands

Post by koimaster » September 16th 2021, 8:17am

Veterans, Gold Star Families get free entrance to national parks, refuges, other public lands


Entrance fees for the National Park Service and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and standard amenity recreation fees for the Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Forest Service and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers sites are waived for current Military Service-members and their dependents, Veterans and Gold Star Families.

They now have free access to approximately 2,000 public locations spread out across more than 400 million acres of public lands, which host activities to fit any lifestyle, from serene to high octane, including hiking, fishing, paddling, biking, hunting, stargazing, camping, and much more.
Are you eligible?

For purposes of this program, a Veteran is identified as an individual who has served in the United States Armed Forces, including the National Guard and Reserves, and is able to present one of the following forms of valid (unexpired) identification:

Department of Defense Identification Card
Veteran Health Identification Card (VHIC)
Veteran ID Card
Veterans designation on a state-issued U.S. driver’s license or identification card

Gold Star Families are next of kin of a member of the United States Armed Forces who lost his or her life in a “qualifying situation,” such as a war, an international terrorist attack, or a military operation outside of the United States while serving with the United States Armed Forces.
The America the Beautiful – the National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass (Interagency Pass) Program

The Interagency Pass Program already includes a free annual pass for active duty members of the U.S. Military and their dependents. Current Military Service-members must show a valid (unexpired) Department of Defense ID. Dependents of current Service-members must show a valid (unexpired) DD Form 1173 AD or DEC.

The annual Military Pass has been expanded to include Veterans and Gold Star Family members. Other free or discounted passes, including some lifetime passes, are available for persons with permanent disabilities, fourth grade students, volunteers, and senior citizens age 62 years or older.

https://blogs.va.gov/VAntage/80547/vete ... ep+15+2021
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Re: Vets get free access to Public Lands

Post by Mark1 » February 16th 2022, 5:13pm

Just thought I'd bump this up after I renewed my annual pass today. Military veterans can get a free pass to national parks, which lasts for one year, from date of issuance. Later this year there is supposed to be a lifetime pass available for veterans. The pass allows you and a carload of people free entrance to national parks. For example, it's now costs $35 bucks to drive through Glacier Park. $30 to drive through Mt. Rainier NP or Crater Lake NP. The cheapskate in me thinks free is a much better price. If you're qualified and interested, you can find a list of sites in your area to obtain the free pass.

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Re: Vets get free access to Public Lands

Post by smellody » February 16th 2022, 5:24pm

Mark1 wrote:
February 16th 2022, 5:13pm
Just thought I'd bump this up after I renewed my annual pass today. Military veterans can get a free pass to national parks, which lasts for one year, from date of issuance. Later this year there is supposed to be a lifetime pass available for veterans. The pass allows you and a carload of people free entrance to national parks. For example, it's now costs $35 bucks to drive through Glacier Park. $30 to drive through Mt. Rainier NP or Crater Lake NP. The cheapskate in me thinks free is a much better price. If you're qualified and interested, you can find a list of sites in your area to obtain the free pass.

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Re: Vets get free access to Public Lands

Post by MAX » February 17th 2022, 6:37am

Snagged my lifetime senior pass a few years back when the fee for it was going from $10 up to $80 IIRC. I always carry my Veteran health ID card, Veteran ID card and a copy of my DD-214 for backup or other uses. Ill probably get the Vet Card if it becomes free but it does the same things. As with anything Government, overcomplicated and poorly explained.

Used the pass at Everglades Natl Park and Darling Natl wildlife refuge on Sanibel Island just a few months ago as well as a wildlife refuge just a few miles from my home.

Well worth the trouble to get one. If I still lived out west it would be a no brainer.
NRPI here.

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Re: Vets get free access to Public Lands

Post by koimaster » February 17th 2022, 10:55am

Have my military one AND my never expiring senior citizen one. Never expiring because I have had it now for several years and they are honoring the terms of the ones that were sold previously before the new rules.

When I drive through to Florida this summer I plan on stopping at Yellowstone and Mt. Rushmore before heading down to Tampa and Key West.
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Re: Vets get free access to Public Lands

Post by codguy » February 17th 2022, 11:20am

I picked up the lifetime pass some 24 years ago. It was free for those with documented 30 percent+ service connected disabilities.

I use it when going to Mt Rainier (local 25-30 minute motorcycle ride to entrance), Olympic & North Cascades National Parks. All three makes for nice motorcycle rides.
I show the Ranger my pass, my biker friends show them their greenbacks......
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Re: Vets get free access to Public Lands

Post by MAX » February 17th 2022, 11:21am

koimaster wrote:
February 17th 2022, 10:55am
Have my military one AND my never expiring senior citizen one. Never expiring because I have had it now for several years and they are honoring the terms of the ones that were sold previously before the new rules.

When I drive through to Florida this summer I plan on stopping at Yellowstone and Mt. Rushmore before heading down to Tampa and Key West.
From Tampa to Key West you will probably drive right by the entrance to the Everglades Natl Park. Worth a stop. $35 entrance fee with no card. Time of day is important there for what you want to see.
NRPI here.

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Re: Vets get free access to Public Lands

Post by MAX » February 17th 2022, 11:22am

codguy wrote:
February 17th 2022, 11:20am
I picked up the lifetime pass some 24 years ago. It was free for those with documented 30 percent+ service connected disabilities.

I use it when going to Mt Rainier (local 25-30 minute motorcycle ride to entrance), Olympic & North Cascades National Parks. All three makes for nice motorcycle rides.
I show the Ranger my pass, my biker friends show them their greenbacks......
They are usually happier to see the card especially the military ones than cash. My experience anyway. They like to talk, guess it is a lonely job at some of the lesser used parks.
NRPI here.

“Begin at the beginning," the King said, very gravely, "and go on till you come to the end: then stop.”
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Re: Vets get free access to Public Lands

Post by koimaster » February 17th 2022, 12:55pm

MAX wrote:
February 17th 2022, 11:21am
koimaster wrote:
February 17th 2022, 10:55am
Have my military one AND my never expiring senior citizen one. Never expiring because I have had it now for several years and they are honoring the terms of the ones that were sold previously before the new rules.

When I drive through to Florida this summer I plan on stopping at Yellowstone and Mt. Rushmore before heading down to Tampa and Key West.
From Tampa to Key West you will probably drive right by the entrance to the Everglades Natl Park. Worth a stop. $35 entrance fee with no card. Time of day is important there for what you want to see.

Good information. Hopefully the everglades will still be there. I understand there is a drought going on down there.
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