Recreation Passes & Permits

Which Pass Do I Need?

To make the best choice on which pass to purchase, you should think about your recreation plans for the next year. You have options such as buying a single day pass or an annual pass that covers the entire Forest. If you plan to recreate in many different spots across the nation, an Interagency Annual Pass may be your best value. You may also qualify for one of the Interagency Lifetime Passes (Interagency Senior Pass or Interagency Access Pass).

Local Forest Pass

The Chequamegon-Nicolet charges a recreation user fee for many of its recreation sites. You may want to consider purchasing an annual recreation pass ahead of your visit to the Forest. The fee covers most high-use recreation areas and those areas where a substantial investment occurred to provide a recreation facility.

These areas include:

  • Developed Beaches
  • Developed Boat Launches
  • Trailhead Parking Areas
  • Developed Picnic Areas

Not all of the areas mentioned above require a fee, but you should anticipate a fee at most of these types of areas. Fee areas are appropriately signed and fee tubes are located at each site where you can fill out the envelope and deposit your fee in the tube. 

Please also note that campers paying a camping fee in a developed campground do not need to pay a user fee for use of all facilities associated with that campground. If you camp in a campground where there is also a beach and boat launch you have free use of that campground's associated facilities. You must pay a user fee if you go to another recreation site that is not part of that campground complex.

Green pass logo

For the 2019 recreation season, the annual day use sticker will increase from $20 to $30 and will cover all current and new proposed day use sites. The 50 percent discount on a second annual pass purchase will no longer be offered.

2019 Forest Annual Pass $30

  • Annual Pass valid April 1 to March 31 of the following year: $30
  • Day Use Pass: $5

If you have an Interagency Annual, Senior, Access or Volunteer Pass, there is no charge to use these day-use sites.

Where to Buy your Pass

Visit any Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest Office to purchase the annual pass.

Mail your request to any office to receive a pass in the mail. Click here for a form to print off, fill out and mail in with your payment. 

Make checks payable to: USDA Forest Service

If you would like to pay with a credit card, please call any of our offices Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. We will process your payment and mail you your annual pass.

Interagency Recreation Passes

There are four different Interagency Passes available.  All four passes are honored nationwide at all Forest Service, National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation and US Fish and Wildlife sites charging entrance or standard amenity fees.  Visit the National Passes & Permits Interagency Pass web site to decide which pass is right for you.