Recreation Passes & Permits

Deer looking onto a trailMost national forest system lands are free of charge for your use and enjoyment. However, developed recreation fees may be charged at some developed sites that offer certain services to the public. 95% of these fees stay on the Cibola National Forest & Grasslands and help to maintain these services. These fees help:

  • Conserve, protect, and restore natural and cultural resources
  • Enhance recreation opportunities by funding trail maintenance, upgrades, safety features, clean facilities and new developments

To learn more about recreation fees, the legislation that enables these fees, and types of fees, visit the National Forest Service Passes page.

Recreation Pass Information

Digital Day Use Pass

You can now purchase a digital pass for most developed day use fee sites through our partner, in just a few simple steps. This pass can be used for all sites that charge a day use fee on Sandia Ranger District, and at Lake McClellan on Black Kettle Ranger District. Purchase your pass at the link above ahead of time, or purchase directly at the site when you visit (requires mobile connectivity); your license plate will be used to verify your purchase. The Digital Day Use Pass covers Day Use fees (not overnight fees) charged at select sites.

The Sandia Annual Amenity Pass

The Sandia Annual Amenity Pass is only valid for fee sites on the Sandia Ranger District. The cost of this pass is $30.00 per year. It is valid for a full year from the date of purchase, and expires the end of the month, in which it was purchased. For instance: for a pass purchased on April 2, 2023, the amenity pass is valid until the end of April 2024.

For more information contact the Sandia Ranger District at 505.281.3304.

America the Beautiful Interagency Recreation Passes

  • Annual Pass

    annual pass

    Frequent visitors of multiple federal agency lands may save money by buying an Interagency Annual Pass. The pass is available to anyone and is valid for 12 months from the month of purchase. The Interagency Annual Pass has two signature lines and any two individuals may sign the pass. Both are considered pass holders.

  • Senior Pass

    senior pass with a picture of a ram

    The Senior Pass is available to US Citizens 62 years of age or older and is valid for the pass holder's lifetime. Passholders receive a 50% discount on some expanded amenity fees like campgrounds (does not include hookups), highly developed boat launches and swimming sites and for specialized interpretive services. 

  • Military Passes

    image of both the military recreation passes

    Free annual pass if you are active military. Includes dependents. 

    Free lifetime pass for Gold Star Families with a valid Gold Star Family Voucher or US military veterans with a valid, veteran ID.

  • Access Pass

    an owl flying over water with a full wingspan

    People who are living with disabilities can request this $10 lifetime pass. It can be used at many different federal lands across the nation.

  • 4th Graders

    children playing outdoors in cold weather clothing

    This free pass is available to 4th Graders, 4th Grade Teachers, home school and free-choice learners 10 years of age. Good from Sept. to Aug. of your 4th Grade school year.

  • Volunteer Pass

    green pass with picture of tall rock cliffs

    The Volunteer Pass annual pass is awarded to those individuals who volunteer 250 hours at one or more recreation sites managed by five Federal agencies as a way to say "thank you!"