Skip to main content

See National Parks for Free on 'Get Outdoors Day'

hiking, national parks
An unnamed hiker gets some air at Glacier National Park. The park encompasses more than 1 million acres of forests, alpine meadows, lakes, rugged peaks and valleys carved by glaciers. (Image credit: Mike Mamrosh, National Park Service )

Need an excuse for a summer excursion? This Saturday, June 9, all U.S. national parks and other locations managed by the National Park Service can be entered free of charge as part of National Get Outdoors Day.

All 397 locations within the national park system are offering free entry, from Michigan's Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore to Colorado and Utah's Dinosaur National Monument.

The fee-free designation applies to entrance fees only and does not affect fees for camping, reservations, tours or use of concessions. Those who plan to spend time in the park beyond June 9 will need to purchase an entrance pass for the remainder of their stay.

If you can't find your way to the wilderness this weekend, there will also be fee-free days at national parks on Sept. 29 (National Public Lands Day) and Nov. 10-12 (Veterans Day Weekend).

The National Park Service's Get Outdoors Day is an effort to encourage Americans to get out and experience their national park areas, according to a statement from the organization.

"National Get Outdoors Day provides an opportunity for kids of all ages to explore and enjoy their national forests and grasslands," said U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell. "This is an open invitation for some healthy fun. Once you've experienced the forest, we think you'll keep coming back."

Follow OurAmazingPlanet for the latest in Earth science and exploration news on Twitter @OAPlanet. We're also on Facebook and Google+.

Live Science Staff
For the science geek in everyone, Live Science offers a fascinating window into the natural and technological world, delivering comprehensive and compelling news and analysis on everything from dinosaur discoveries, archaeological finds and amazing animals to health, innovation and wearable technology. We aim to empower and inspire our readers with the tools needed to understand the world and appreciate its everyday awe.