Entrance Fees & Recreational Permits

In order to maintain the park system without further taxing the general population, the National Park Service charges moderate entrance fees and also collects fees for special recreation permits, including fishing and boating. Eighty-percent of park entrance fees at Yellowstone National Park stay within the park, while the remaining twenty-percent are contributed to a general National Park Service fund that maintains parks where no fees are charged. If you are planning on leaving and re-entering the park within seven days from the date of your first visit, be sure to keep your admission receipt as proof of payment. Visitors should also note that advance reservations are not necessary for park entrance. 

  • For private, non-commercial vehicles, the entrance fee is $20. The fee provides visitors with a seven-day pass to both Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks.
  • Motorcyclists and snowmobile operators are each charged a $15 entrance fee for a seven-day admission to both Yellowstone and Grand Teton. All motorcyclists and snowmobilers must possess a valid driver’s license.
  • Anyone over age sixteen who enters the park on foot, bicycle, skis, or snowshoes can expect to pay $10 for a seven-day pass. 
  • For those planning on visiting Yellowstone or Grand Teton National Park several times throughout the year, a $40 Annual Area Pass may be purchased. The permit is valid 365 days from the date of purchase.
  • For National Park lovers, the $50 National Parks Pass guarantees admission to any national park. The pass is valid one year from the date of purchase.
  • Permanently disabled or blind individuals may qualify for the Golden Access Passport with medical proof of their condition. The permit grants qualified individuals and any accompanying passengers free access to all national parks. The pass also entitles individuals to a fifty percent discount on campground and other park fees.
  • The Golden Age Passport is a lifetime passport for senior citizens over age sixty-two. A one-time $10 fee is charged, and qualified individuals receive free access to all national parks. The permit also provides a fifty-percent discount on campground and other park fees.
  • Priced at $65, the Golden Eagle Passport allows the permit holder and all accompanying passengers access to all National Parks and nearly every national monument and federal preserve within the U.S. The permit is valid one year from the date of purchase.
  • Backcountry User Permits are available free of charge, but all those on foot, horseback, or boat must acquire a permit. Overnight backcountry stays also require a special permit. Permits are available during summer up to forty-eight hours in advance from the following ranger stations: Bridge Bay, South Entrance, Bechler, Canyon, Grant Village, Mammoth, Old Faithful, Lake, West Entrance, and Tower.
  • Boating permits are required for any watercraft occupying Yellowstone’s scenic park waters. Motorized boaters may select from a $20 annual permit or a $10 seven-day pass. Non-motorized craft are charged a $10 annual permit or a $5 seven-day pass. Boating permits are available at the following ranger stations: South Entrance, Bridge Bay, Grant Village, and Lake. Water users should note that Yellowstone’s rivers and streams are closed to all watercraft. The only exception is the Lewis River stretching between Lewis and Shoshone Lakes where non-motorized boats are allowed.
  • Yellowstone’s fishing season runs from Memorial Day weekend through the first Sunday in November. Exceptions include Yellowstone Lake, which opens on June 1; Yellowstone Lake tributaries, which are accessible on July 15; and selected portions of the Yellowstone River and its tributary streams, which open July 15. All anglers must acquire a permit. For youth and adults over age sixteen, a $35 seasonal permit is available as well as a $20 seven-day pass and a $15 three-day permit. Youth ages twelve to fifteen must carry a permit, but there is no charge, while children under age twelve can fish without a permit when a paying adult accompanies them.  

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