Yukon camping fees going up for 1st time in 20 years

·2 min read
A campsite at Yukon's Fox Lake campground. Camping fees will go up for the first time in 20 years in Yukon, beginning this coming season. (Paul Tukker/CBC - image credit)
A campsite at Yukon's Fox Lake campground. Camping fees will go up for the first time in 20 years in Yukon, beginning this coming season. (Paul Tukker/CBC - image credit)

There will be a noticeable change to camping in the Yukon this year, at least, when it comes to booking.

Camping fees are going up in the territory for the first time in 20 years.

By bringing up the price, the government said it hopes to double their current recovery of costs from 10 to 20 per cent.

Yukon Parks director Mike Etches said the services the camping fees help cover include opening the campgrounds, cleaning the outhouses, providing firewood and the interpretive programs, as well as providing park rangers and officers. Fees also help cover visitor safety and the cost of the administrative system.

Starting this year, campers will also be able to pay online for a daily campground permit, using the same website currently used to buy annual campground permits and fishing licences.

"We'll take our very affordable system and make it more accessible and provide a bit more surety for people who would like to go and visit our campgrounds," he said. "We're going to see if the reservation system is going to work in the Yukon."

Public support

He said based on the public engagement, not everyone was happy to see fees go up, however, about 41 per cent of the people who were part of the engagement survey supported the increase in fees, and about 13 per cent were unsure.

"We figured that's pretty strong support for increasing fees," Etches said. "We did hear that they really appreciate the services provided."

Though the fees will be going up, Etches said they will also still include day use, parking, vehicle access and boat launch use.

"That's a pretty unique offer," he said. "That's the lowest combined offer for camping, and most anywhere in Canada."

The actual increase for daily camping fee will go from the current $12 to $20, or $18 if you get a prepaid camping permit, or purchase one online.

Camping season will start on April 29 for Yukon campgrounds.

"Park fees in the Yukon have not been updated since 2002 and, even with these new fees, the Yukon will continue to have the lowest camping fees in the country," said Yukon Environment Minister Nils Clarke in a statement.

"These new fees will help support the expansion of our park network in the future, build a financially sustainable park system and properly maintain parks for Yukoners now and for generations to come."

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