Proposed Fee Changes on Monongahela National Forest
The Monongahela National Forest is seeking public comment on a proposal that would increase fees at three campgrounds and add a new picnic shelter opportunity for Forest visitors according to a press release from the Forest Service.
Based on the proposed fee changes, Bear Heaven Campground would increase from $5 per night to $10 per night for single sites. Laurel Fork Campground would increase from $8 per night to $10 per night for single sites and from $16 to $20 per night for double sites. Red Creek Campground would increase from $11 per night to $15 per night for single sites. Each of these campgrounds has recently received new picnic tables, fire rings, lantern posts, and gravel. The Forest has also added bear resistant trash cans to the Red Creek Campground.
In addition, the proposal includes a new daily reservation fee of $75 for a Seneca Rocks Picnic Shelter, plus a $10 service fee for this reservation. Advance reservations for the shelter will be available through www.recreation.gov or by calling 1-877-444-6777. Use of the shelter during unreserved times will remain free of charge. This shelter, constructed in 2017 near the Sites Homestead at the base of Seneca Rocks, includes a pedestal grill and is fully accessible. The site can be used for gatherings such as reunions, weddings, or other celebrations. Fee revenue would ensure that the site is cleaned up after these events, and help fund ongoing maintenance and upkeep of the facility.
The proposed fee changes will help standardize camping fees on the northern portion of the Forest, according to Troy Waskey, District Ranger on the Cheat-Potomac Ranger District. He said they are also excited about the new shelter at the Seneca Rocks picnic area and noted that it’s located in a gorgeous setting near many recreation opportunities and that they expect to see a lot of large groups take advantage of this unique opportunity. Waskey said that revenue generated from fees will be used for continued improvements such as picnic tables, grills, fire rings, restroom facilities, and signage.
Once local public involvement is complete, the proposed fees will be reviewed by the Eastern Region Recreation Resource Advisory Committee. Committee members will submit a recommendation on the proposals to the Regional Forester for a final decision.
They are requesting that any comments regarding these fee proposals be submitted by close of business on September 30th.
Comments can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “Fee Change”. Written comments must be mailed or delivered to Monongahela National Forest Cheat-Potomac Ranger District Office, 2499 North Fork Hwy, Petersburg, WV 26847 or sent by fax to 304-257-2482, Attn: Alex Schlueter.
Verbal comments must be provided in person at the office during normal business hours (Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.) or by calling 304-257-4488 x7114. Please share that you would like to provide comments on the proposed recreation fee changes. For more information on the proposed project, visit our website at https://www.fs.usda.gov/mnf.