Friday, October 16, 2009

Red Rock Canyon Fee Changes

The BLM and the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area are seriously considering major changes to the fee structure at Red Rock. Entrance to the Scenic Drive and camping will both become more expensive.

The American Alpine Institute just received the following letter from the Southern Nevada District Office of the BLM:

Dear Interested Party:

On August 14, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Southern Nevada District Office released the draft Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area Business Plan for public comment. This draft document provides the public with the opportunity to review the functional responsibilities, operational standards and financial picture of Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area. The draft business plan addresses proposed changes in the fee schedule and complies with changes in federal authorities that authorize the BLM to collect recreation fees.

As part of the public comment period, two meetings have been scheduled to provide information, address participant questions and offer an opportunity for participants to provide comments to a recorder in regard to the draft business plan.

To accommodate attendee schedules. two meetings will be held on Thursday, October 22 at the BLM office at 4701 North Torrey Pines Drive in Conference Rooms A, B, and C. The first meeting will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. and the second will be held from 6 to 8 p.m.

Copies of the draft Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area Business Plan and information on how to comment before the November 16th deadline can be found online at, and CD and/or hard copies are available at the BLM Southern Nevada District Office and Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area Visitor Center.

If you have any questions regarding management of Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, please contact Mark Tanaka-Sanders at the above address or by telephone at 702-515-5365.


Mary Jo Rugwell
Southern Nevada District

The changes that are being proposed are rather radical. Following is an excerpt from a Las Vegas Sun article on the changes:

Red Rock Canyon officials are seeking comments on plans to raise fees at the national conservation area.

The fees for a day pass on the scenic drive would rise from $5 for a car to $7. Motorcycles would see an increase from $2 to $3. Bicyclists and hikers would be asked to pay $3, where they now are admitted for free.

An annual pass would cost $30, up from $20, and tour buses would be charged $5 per person, compared with the current $2.

In addition, the charge for individual campsites would rise from $10 to $15 and from $25 to $40 for group campsites. Group picnics at Red Spring, which are now free, would cost $40.

Comment are being accepted by e-mail (, fax (702-515-5023) or mail (BLM Southern Nevada District Office, Attn: Mark Tanaka-Sanders, 4701 N. Torrey Pines, Las Vegas, NV 89130). Comments may also be delivered to the Red Rock Visitor Center or the Red Rock Campground. The deadline for comments is November 16th.

It is important for climbers to band together against these types of things. Ideally, there will be a lot of climbers on hand at the meetings, but most people who visit Red Rock regularly don't live locally. It is extremely important for those people to send comments as well.

--Jason D. Martin

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