Monument entrance fees increasing in 2020

The Colorado National Monument near Grand Junction will increase entrance fees $5 starting Jan. 1.

Entrance fees will increase to $15 for individuals, $20 for motorcycles and $25 for private vehicles. The annual pass will increase to $45, although an annual pass purchased prior to Dec. 31 will cost $40 and remain valid through 2020. The fee for the Saddlehorn Campground will remain unchanged at $22.

The U.S. Department of Interior mandated the entrance fee increase in 2018, but they were delayed because of a previous increase.

Federal law requires that recreational fees charged on public lands be used for direct visitor benefits. Projects funded by recreational fees at the monument have included trail work on the Devil’s Kitchen and Liberty Cap trails and new railings at overlooks such as Artist Point. Projects planned for the coming year include continued work on Liberty Cap Trail and a start to work on Upper Monument Canyon Trail, Otto’s Trail and Coke Ovens Trail.

“Providing an outstanding visitor experience is a top priority for our team at the monument,” said Nathan Souder, superintendent of the Colorado National Monument. “The increased revenue from entrance fees will provide additional funding that will help us greatly in meeting our priority by improving infrastructure and addressing maintenance needs that have a direct connection to our guests.”

Entrances fees are not charged to those under 16 years of age or to holders of access, military and fourth grade passes. Prices for the interagency annual and senior passes won’t change.