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This Weekend is Fee Free at Many California National Parks

Aug 09, 2010 by Lisa Newton

Free, it’s a popular word. In fact, I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like the word free.

Especially when it’s associated with either a material possession or a National Park.

For the upcoming weekend, August 14th -15th, select National Parks will be fee free.

At National Parks, you’ll discover history, nature, and receive an education about our most precious resource–the great outdoors. As someone who has visited numerous National Parks–each one is unique and holds out once-in-a-lifetime experiences with their grandeur, beauty, and distinctiveness.

At the SoCal National Parks, you’ll discover The Old Point Loma Lighthouse, which has been safely guiding mariners into the harbor of San Diego since 1855, or a desert of streaming sand dunes, multicolored rock layers, water-fluted canyons, and 3 million acres of wilderness. Maybe you’ll head to a fascinating variety of plants and animals that make their home in this land shaped by strong winds, unpredictable torrents of rain, and climatic extremes.

It all awaits you for you in SoCal and this weekend, it’s fee free:

If you’d like to make it a weekend getaway to other spectacular parks in California, here’s the scoop on the fee free ones:

For a complete list of all the National Parks for this fee free weekend, just visit the National Parks website.

If for some reason, you can’t make it this weekend, but want to experience all that the National Parks have to offer, here’s a story and a suggestion.

Several years ago, I took my four daughters on a cross-country trip; from the East Coast to the West Coast. Because most of the trip was planned for the West Coast, we only drove for three days, just stopping to sleep, at an average of 600 miles per day, until we reached New Mexico.

Our first stop was Carlsbad Caverns National Park. Because my kids had mapped many National Parks as places they definitely wanted to go to, we purchased a National Parks Annual Pass, which allowed entrance into all the National Parks, for no additional charge. At the time, the annual pass could be purchased for $50.00. Today, the name has changed to the America the Beautiful – National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass– Annual Pass, and it’s $80.00. If you’re planning on visiting multiple parks within a single year or one park over and over, an annual pass is the best idea.

If you’re 62 or older, the Pass gets even better. At a cost of only $10.00, you get a lifetime entrance pass, the America the Beautiful – National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass– Senior Pass, which includes entrance to all the National Parks, plus a selected discount on activities camping, swimming, boat launch, and specialized interpretive services.

So be sure to take advantage of this fee free weekend and do a little exploring all and around Southern California’ National Parks–you’ll thank yourself on Sunday.

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Hiking/Walking, Just for fun, Parks, Recreation, SoCal
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