Recreation Passes & Permits

Some Forest Service sites in the Columbia River Gorge require that visitors pay a fee or display a valid pass to maintain or enhance the site's amenities. Recreation fees at these “standard amenity” sites is authorized through the 2004 Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act (FLREA). In the Columbia River Gorge, the following Forest Service recreation sites require a fee. 

[Icon: Trailhead]Bridge of the Gods Trailhead
Picnic Icon[Icon: Trailhead] Dog Mountain Trailhead
Picnic Icon [Icon: Trailhead]Eagle Creek Recreation Area
Picnic Icon[Icon: Trailhead] Herman Creek Trailhead
[Icon: Picnic Site]Trailhead Icon Larch Mountain Recreation Area
 Picnic Icon[Icon: Trailhead]Bonneville Trailhead
[Icon: Picnic Site] Sam's Walker Day Use Site
[Icon: Picnic Site][Icon: Trailhead] Sandy River Delta Day Use Site
[Icon: Picnic Site] St. Cloud Day Use Site
Picnic Icon[Icon: Trailhead] Wahclella Falls Trailhead
[Icon: Trailhead] Wyeth/Gorton Creek Trailhead

The good news is that fees are waived on these National Fee-Free Days each year:

  • Martin Luther King Jr. Day
  • President’s Day
  • National Get Outdoors Day
  • National Public Lands Day
  • Veterans Day

Local Passes & Permit

Graphic: Digital Recreation Pass

Digital Recreation Day Pass ($5) - Enjoy the convenience of buying a Digital Recreation Day Pass at for Forest Service fee sites in the Scenic Area. You can easily download your digital pass on your phone or tablet, no printing is required and funds directly help support Scenic Area improvements!

Dog Mountain trail is highlighted by spring-blooming yellow balsamroot flowers

Seasonal Dog Mountain Hiking Permit - Required on weekends & Memorial Day during peak wildlfower season for each individual using the Dog Mountain Trail System.

[IMAGE: Annual Northwest Forest Pass.  Click for More Information on Annual Northwest Forest Pass]

Annual Pass ($30) - Annual pass honored at all Forest Service operated recreation sites in Washington and Oregon where a day use fee is required. Valid for one year from the last day of the month issued.

Interagency Passes

There are two options for buying interagency passes:

  • Visit your nearest national forest office or Recreation Pass Vendor. Note -- if you buy from a vendor in the Columbia River Gorge, 95% of proceeds go to maintaining National Scenic Area recreation sites.
  • Buy online at the US Geological Survey store -- leaving sufficience time for the order to be shipped and mailed to you.
4th Grade pass   

Every Kid Outdoors Pass - An interagency pass, free for 4th grade students, that enables the child (at some family members) entry to Forest Service and other federal recreation sites.

Graphic: Annual Pass Image


"America the Beautiful" Annual Pass ($80) -  This federal interagency pass that enables entry to recreation sites nationwide for 12 months. Be aware that state recreation areas are not included, and that concessionaires (i.e. campgrounds, ski areas) may still charge for specific services they provide on public lands.

Graphic: Senior Pass


"America the Beautiful" Senior Lifetime Pass ($80) -  Federal interagency pass for adults aged 62 or older that is valid for the lifetime of the passholder.

Graphic: Senior Annual Pass


"America the Beautiful" Annual Senior Pass ($20) - This federal interagency pass is valid those age 62 or older for one year from month of purchase. The cost of the Senior Annual Pass may be applied towards the purchase of a Senior Lifetime Pass. 

Graphic: Access Pass Image 2018


"America the Beautiful" Access Pass (Free)  -  This federal interagency pass enables those with a permanent disability to access public recreation sites.

Graphic: Military Pass image 2018  

"America the Beautiful" Annual Military Pass (Free) - Federal interagency recreation pass that is available for active military personel, or their dependents. Valid for 12 months.

Graphic: Volunteer Pass 2018  

"America the Beautiful" Volunteer Pass - This federal interagency pass can be issued free of charge as a way to thank a U.S. citizen or permanent resident who has contributed 250 or more volunteer hours on federal public lands. Visit our "Volunteering" webpage to learn about volunteer opportunities on the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area.

Recreation Special Use Permits

The Forest Service may require recreation permits when extra measures are needed to protect natural or cultural resources, to restrict the number of people participating in the activity at any one time, to provide extra safety or other specialized services. These permits may be issued to individuals as “Special Recreation Permits.” 

  • No “Special Recreation Permits” are currently required at National Scenic Area sites. 
  • Organized recreational events (such as competitive races, fund raisers, club activities, weddings, and family reunions) and commercial activities conducted on National Forest System lands do often require a Special Use Permit