Recreation Passes & Permits
There are three major Recreation Passes on the Coconino Forest; the America the Beautiful Pass, the Red Rock Pass and the Backcountry Pass for the Kachina Peaks Wilderness.
For wedding permits, family reunions, commercial events, click "Event/Commercial Permits" in the left column.
Interagency Recreation Passes (America the Beautiful)
America The Beautiful - The National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Annual Pass is available at most National Forest Service and National Park Service offices. The America the Beautiful Annual Pass may also be purchased "on line" at The USGS Store website. [More]
Participating agencies include the National Park Service (NPS), Forest Service (USDA FS), Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation), Army Corps of Engineers (COE) and Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA)
America the Beautiful Annual Pass: This pass provides access to, and use of, NPS, USDA FS, FWS, BLM and Reclamation sites that charge entrance or standard amenity fees. It will admit the pass holder and any accompanying passengers in a private vehicle. In those areas where a per-person fee is charged, the pass admits the pass holder and up to 3 additional persons 16 year of age or older. This pass sells for $80. [More]
America the Beautiful Senior Pass: A lifetime pass available to citizens or permanent residents of the United States who are 62 years of age or older and must be obtained in person. In addition to the benefits provided by the Annual Pass, the Senior cardholders will continue to receive a 50% fee discount at campgrounds, developed boat launches and swimming sites and for specialized interpretive services (Annual Passes do NOT provide this discount). This pass sells for a one-time $10 fee. The purchaser must show proof of age, which may be a state driver's license showing birth date, a birth certificate, or a similar document. [More]
America the Beautiful Access Pass: A lifetime pass available to citizens or permanent residents of the United States who have been medically determined to be blind or permanently disabled for purposes of receiving Federal benefits. This pass provides the same benefits as the Senior Pass. This is a free pass but must be obtained in person. Documentation required. (Examples of acceptable documentation include: statement by a licensed physician; document issued by Federal agency such as the Veteran's Administration, Social Security Disability Income or Supplemental Security Income; or document issued by a State agency such as a vocational rehabilitation agency.) [More]
America the Beautiful Annual Pass does NOT include concessionaire service, however, concessionaires will honor the America the Beautiful Senior/Access Passes according to the terms of their current permit.
Any America the Beautiful Pass can be used in lieu of the Red Rock Pass on the Coconino National Forest.
Unexpired Golden Passes will be honored until their expiration date.
Red Rock Pass Program
The Red Rock Pass program is a conservation tool designed to protect, enhance, and maintain Sedona’s awe-inspiring red rock landscape for the American public today and into the future.
The level of care and maintenance required for the Red Rock landscape exceeds that needed in other National Forest areas due to the large amount of visitors and use each year. Revenue from the pass program is making a difference providing improved visitor information, environmental protection and lasting memorable experiences!
Enhanced recreation amenities include: outstanding urban and backcountry hiking; day use picnic areas, restroom facilities; informational and interpretive signing; maintained roads for breath-taking vistas and photo opportunities; and secure places for individual solitude and family recreation.
Conservation work funded behind the scene include hundreds of miles of maintained trails; hundreds of acres of vegetation and soil stabilization; thousands of pounds of trash being collected; and a safer National Forest for the American public.
When is a Red Rock Pass Required?
A Red Rock Pass (or America The Beautiful Interagency Pass, Golden Age or Golden Access) is required when recreating on National Forest land in Red Rock Country. The pass must be displayed in the windshield of the vehicle.
Vehicles parked on the National Forest in the red rock area that do not display a valid pass in the windshield are subject to receiving a citation.
A pass is not required for incidental stopping to take a photograph or to enjoy a scenic vista (approximately 15 minutes or less).
The Red Rock Pass is sold in three options: Daily for $5.00, Weekly for $15.00 and Annually for $20.00. [More]
Backcountry Permits Necessary in Winter only
Kachina Peaks Wilderness Access permits, commonly known as backcountry permits, required in winter for access to the Kachina Peaks Wilderness area, are available at the Peaks Ranger District and the Supervisor's Office in winter weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and on Saturday and Sunday at Agassiz Lodge at the Arizona Snowbowl (when the Snowbowl is open) from 9 to 11 a.m. This free permit is designed to help inform backcountry snow recreationists about travel hazards, and to assist the Forest Service and the Coconino County Sheriff’s Office with search and rescue should that become necessary. Permits are only required for accessing the backcountry from Arizona Snowbowl and the Snowbowl Road.
Backcountry permits are valid for the entire winter and are designed for snowshoers, cross-country skiers and snowboarders using the Kachina Peaks Wilderness. Permits are required to be displayed in the front windshield of the permit holder’s vehicle if the vehicle is parked at the Lamar Haines trailhead, the entrance of the Freidlein Prairie Road (Forest Road 522) or the Arizona Snowbowl Ski Area.
In addition to having a permit, backcountry campers, skiers and snowboarders who launch their trip from the Ski Area or the Snowbowl Road also need to enter information in one of three trip registers. The Coconino National Forest added a new trip register location at the Lamar Haines trailhead on Snowbowl Road last year. The others are at the ticket window at the Hart Prairie Lodge and near the top of the Agassiz chairlift.
The Forest Service wants people to enjoy backcountry winter activities—but with a high degree of safety. The information we’re asking for is intended to help people avoid dangers associated with avalanches and hypothermia. When someone reads the hazard warnings on the permit, it usually makes them stop and think for a few moments, and this is often exactly what is needed to introduce the element of caution that can save a person’s life.
Backcountry permits, which are free of charge, are available at the Flagstaff Ranger Station and the Supervisor's Offices during the week. When Arizona Snowbowl is open, permits may also be obtained in the Agassiz Lodge Lounge on weekends from 9 a.m. until 11:30 a.m.. For more information, call the Flagstaff Ranger Station at (928) 526-0866.
Rules and Regulations of Backcountry Permit (16kb .pdf file)