Wilderness Permit Information

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rayfound
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Re: Wilderness Permit Information

Post by rayfound » Wed Jan 29, 2020 10:33 am

I mean, the biggest problem with the permit system right now is there's no reason *NOT* to book. If you are planning a trip 6 months out, it makes sense to book for that extra person or two who might not make it, or book both weekends you think might work... so I am sure bookings are vastly higher than actual hikers.

At least with the walkup permits... you're there.... you've committed to actually utilizing the space. It's the same problem with preservable front-country campgrounds, anything bookable is booked way early because the cost of cancelling or no-showing is sufficiently low to not be enough deterrent.








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Re: Wilderness Permit Information

Post by c9h13no3 » Wed Jan 29, 2020 12:14 pm

rayfound wrote:
Wed Jan 29, 2020 10:33 am
I mean, the biggest problem with the permit system right now is there's no reason *NOT* to book. If you are planning a trip 6 months out, it makes sense to book for that extra person or two who might not make it, or book both weekends you think might work... so I am sure bookings are vastly higher than actual hikers.

At least with the walkup permits... you're there.... you've committed to actually utilizing the space. It's the same problem with preservable front-country campgrounds, anything bookable is booked way early because the cost of cancelling or no-showing is sufficiently low to not be enough deterrent.
All this is incredibly true.
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Re: Wilderness Permit Information

Post by NoBoHiker » Wed Jan 29, 2020 9:19 pm

TurboHike wrote:
Sun Jan 26, 2020 4:31 pm
wsp_scott wrote:
Sun Jan 26, 2020 8:14 am
Does anyone know if Inyo permits on Recreation.gov are released at 7am
10 a.m. Eastern, so 7 a.m. Pacific time.

I have never seen the permits released late, but a few times last year they were released early by a couple of hours. I was told this was a glitch in the system.
I just pulled a permit from Recreation.gov yesterday, logged in 6:50am and noticed that they were already available.

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Re: Wilderness Permit Information

Post by TurboHike » Thu Jan 30, 2020 6:06 am

NoBoHiker,

That's good to know, another data point. Like I said, this happened to me last year, was told it was a glitch, obviously not fixed yet. But the official time is still 10 a.m. eastern, so at a whim they could revert back to 10 a.m.

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maverick
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Re: Wilderness Permit Information

Post by maverick » Mon Feb 03, 2020 8:06 pm

Inyo NF:
There has been a lot of discussion in the Eastern Sierra community about John Muir Trail permit administration this winter.

Background: There is a long-standing agreement between parks and forests for local wilderness permits in the Sierra Nevada region (Inyo National Forest, Sequoia and Kings Canyon, Sierra National Forest and Yosemite National Park). This agreement means that these national parks and forests will accept hikers with a permit issued by another local agency where the trip begins, and a permit was valid if the trip was for continuous wilderness travel. The four agencies have agreed to apply a consistent definition of continuous wilderness travel.

Exiting to resupply was never part of a locally issued wilderness permit. This includes a JMT permit. However, in the past, Inyo National Forest Trail Rangers were making an exception to allow resupply. In recent years it had been widely publicized that you could leave the trail, but it was not a term of the permit. Wilderness Rangers are documenting misuse of these permits. An example is people leaving the trail for extended periods and then returning where they left off well past when they were permitted to be traveling through an area. These misuses are well beyond the spirit of a resupply and then returning to the trail.

Last year, Kearsarge Pass had four times the traffic of previous years, greatly exceeding the quota mandated to manage impacts at Kearsarge. We would be remiss if we do not address these resource impacts and wilderness management issues.

Concern: Local businesses that provide resupply services, the John Muir Trail communities, and many others have expressed concern for loss of business and experience if resupply was not allowed.

Solution: Leadership on the Inyo National Forest wants to be responsive to our communities and the experiences that people seek in the Sierra Nevada. We also want to be good partners with our neighboring agencies and help address the collective concern for managing an increasingly popular and busy trail corridor.

“The Inyo will continue to allow exit for resupply for JMT and other local permits with a long-distance hike,” said Tammy Randall-Parker, Forest Supervisor for the Inyo National Forest. “However, we are asking our community, both locally and in the JMT community, to adhere to the spirit of a resupply and to offer constructive solutions that help us manage these wilderness areas.”

The Inyo National Forest will be reaching out to our partners, stakeholders, and interested publics over the upcoming year to define what resupply looks like in the Sierra Nevada region.
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Re: Wilderness Permit Information

Post by bobby49 » Mon Feb 03, 2020 11:37 pm

TurboHike wrote:
Thu Jan 30, 2020 6:06 am
NoBoHiker,

That's good to know, another data point. Like I said, this happened to me last year, was told it was a glitch, obviously not fixed yet. But the official time is still 10 a.m. eastern, so at a whim they could revert back to 10 a.m.
I just got a reservation for a date six months out, and it was available at 5:15 a.m. PST.

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Re: Wilderness Permit Information

Post by Wandering Daisy » Tue Feb 04, 2020 1:25 pm

Crowding on Kearsarge Pass trail will not be solved by restricting turnaround time for resupply to one day. The issue is similar to day-hiking crowding on other trails, such as Rock Creek, which is a very popular day-hike area. In my opinion, Kearsarge resupply should not be allowed on a PCT permit, perhaps also not on a JMT permit, unless in an emergency.

For the average backpacker with a week's vacation time only, Kearsarge Pass allows them to get into some really good country with their limited time off. PCT'ers easily go 20-30 miles a day and resupply via Kearsarge has recently become a "convenience" not necessity; they have previously used other resupply points. The JMT hiker is a bit more like regular backpackers, and resupply via Kearsarge may be more of a necessity for them.

The point is, PCT hikers already get many advantages over local users of the Sierra with only having to have one permit the entire length. Managing crowds/damage on the Kearsarge Trail should not be done at the expense of the average local backpacker. The fact that the shuttle service businesses make a lot of money off PCT-JMT hikers also should not shove the average backpacker out of the picture.

One compromise would be to accept the increased use and build/maintain a bombproof trail, paid for by PCT-JMT fees, and let them come out and go back in on their permits, but not allow them to camp between the PCT and the trailhead (leaving this to those who get a new permit). Whether PCT-JMT hikers stay out 1 day or 4 days really does not make a big difference in their impact on the trail, although it may be an issue with their permits.

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Re: Wilderness Permit Information

Post by rightstar76 » Tue Feb 04, 2020 2:16 pm

Hi WD. I think PCT thru hikers should be allowed to resupply at Onion Valley. Otherwise it will be another administrative headache like Whitney Portal and businesses in Independence will be affected. The question is what can be done about misusing the resupply i.e. returning two weeks later. Also, dayhikers bringing supplies to friends and families which increases foot traffic. Improving the trail and adding toilets might be a possibilty. See https://jmtwilderness.org/project/resupply_sites/.

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Re: Wilderness Permit Information

Post by johnz » Wed Feb 05, 2020 6:48 am

I just got a Bishop Pass permit at 12:01 am Pacific time. I think release time is midnight Pacific time. I tried midnight Eastern and it wasn't available.

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Re: Wilderness Permit Information

Post by Mike M. » Mon Feb 10, 2020 4:38 pm

The window for Inyo National Forest reserved permits opens at midnight Pacific time. Six months out minus one second is the earliest you can reserve a permit. Act quickly or you are likely to miss out entirely. For the four high-demand trailheads (Cottonwood Pass, Kearsarge Pass, Bishop Pass, and Piute Pass) reservable spots for peak-season departure dates are gobbled up within minutes of being released.

For example, the reservation window for August 10th opened this morning (February 10th) at midnight. By 12:30 am virtually every one of the above named trailheads was booked 100%.

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