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Saturday, June 3, 2023

Forest Service seeks public input on Chimney Rock National Monument fee proposal

By Lorena Williams
Forest Service

The San Juan National Forest is proposing changes to the management, operations and fee structure associated with Chimney Rock National Monument. 

Significant capital improvements, coupled with increased visitation and other changed conditions, point to the need for the Forest to assume greater responsibility for site management. The changes are in line with agency guidance, Recreation Enhancement Act parameters for fee collections, and management practices at comparable parks and monuments. 

Under this proposal, the San Juan National Forest would assume responsibility for most site operations by hiring a dedicated workforce devoted to providing visitor information, facility maintenance, resource protection, shuttle transportation and other visitor services. Fees would be changed, and revenue would be retained by the Forest to fund operation and maintenance costs. Currently, fees are collected and retained by San Juan National Forest’s partner Chimney Rock Interpretive Association, and cost $12-16/adult and $6-8/child. Under this proposal, visitors would be assessed a $20/vehicle fee and $10/motorcycle fee valid for five days. Interagency, Access, Senior, Military and 4th Grade passes would be honored. 

Please tell us what you think about the Chimney Rock National Monument fee proposal.

From June 12 to Sept. 30, rangers will be available for questions and comments at the monument. They will have comment cards and additional information. You may submit comments in person at any San Juan National Forest office, online at https://cara.ecosystem-management.org/Public//CommentInput?Project=NP-2894, by email to paul.blackman@usda.gov, or by mail to: U.S. Forest Service, Chimney Rock Fee Proposal, P.O. Box 310, Pagosa Springs, CO 81147.

For more information on the fee proposal, contact Paul Blackman at paul.blackman@usda.gov or (970) 264-1505.

For information on current fire restrictions, conditions and recreation opportunities on the San Juan National Forest, call (970) 247-4874.

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