In an effort to manage crowds and enhance visitor experience, several prominent national parks in the United States are reintroducing timed reservation systems for the upcoming year, necessitating travelers to plan their visits in advance.
The measure, previously implemented with success in 2023, is set to be enforced in parks ranging from Arches National Park to Yosemite National Park.
Arches National Park Acting Superintendent, Brendan Bray, expressed satisfaction with the positive feedback received from the 2023 vehicle reservation pilot, citing the guaranteed arrival time and reduced congestion. The repeat pilot program scheduled for 2024 aims to further evaluate how such systems can optimize visitor experiences while safeguarding the extraordinary landscapes.
Parks Requiring Reservations in 2024
Arches National Park
Starting April 1, 2024, Arches National Park will reintroduce a pilot program akin to the successful 2023 model. Reservations will be released monthly, three months in advance, enabling travelers to access the park during a designated one-hour window. The reservations are free, with a $2 recreation.gov processing fee.
Glacier National Park
Montana’s Glacier National Park will reinstate its reservation system on May 24, 2024, encompassing the west side of the Going-to-the-Sun Road and North Fork, with a subsequent start on July 1 for the Many Glacier valley. Notably, vehicle reservations will be valid for one day, and the $2 processing fee applies.
Rocky Mountain National Park
Commencing May 24, Rocky Mountain National Park will re-implement a reservation system. Visitors will need two timed permits for access to the Bear Lake Road Corridor and the remainder of the park, allowing entry within two-hour windows. Reservations are free, with a $2 recreation.gov processing fee.
Yosemite National Park
Yosemite National Park will enhance its reservation system with the “Peak Hours Plus” 2024 program. Vehicle reservations will be mandatory on weekends from April 13 to June 30, every day from July 1 to Aug. 16, and on weekends from Aug. 17 to Oct. 27. Two types of reservations will be available, with day-use reservations costing $2.
Zion National Park
Utah’s Zion National Park will continue to require reservations for the popular Angels Landing in 2024. Reservations, facilitated through a lottery system starting Jan. 1, cost $3 per person.
As these national parks implement reservation systems, travelers are encouraged to plan their visits meticulously, taking advantage of the convenience and benefits offered by these timed entry programs.