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Alpine_Tom

climbing fee going up

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The local news station made it sound like it is already a "done deal". The fee is proposed to go from the current $15, up to $30!!! This money all goes to the "mountaineering program". None of it goes to cover rescues. Rescues are still covered by the taxpayer.

 

Combined with the $10 park entrance fee, it will now cost $40 to climb a mountain we supposedly own already.

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I am interested in annual passes increases either to enter the park or climb. I own the annual pass to climb and they really are fair to those that have multiple visits to the park compared to one time visitors. I can understand the rate increase after last year being set into motion, even if it doesnt cover rescue costs, I dont remember when or how much the last increase was. TTT [MR T]

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quote:

Originally posted by Fairweather:

The local news station made it sound like it is already a "done deal". The fee is proposed to go from the current $15, up to $30!!! This money all goes to the "mountaineering program". None of it goes to cover rescues. Rescues are still covered by the taxpayer.

 

Combined with the $10 park entrance fee, it will now cost $40 to climb a mountain we supposedly own already.

Welcome to the land of the fee. That's why I don't climb on Rainier much any more.

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we have to pay 30 bucks to climb Rainier. What do the hikers have to pay to hike around mount Rainier ???

 

[ 11-23-2002, 03:44 PM: Message edited by: Skisports ]

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I thought I'd also heard the fee increase reported as a done deal on the radio, along with the fact of 11,000 climber visits last year. A third of a million dollars would be a significant chunk of money, wonder how they plan to spend it.

 

From the MRNP website:

quote:

Climbers pay a $15 per person, per climb, Mountaineering Cost Recovery fee upon arrival in the park, in order to obtain their Climbing Permit, which also serves as their Wilderness Camping Permit. An annual climbing pass is available for $25. Note: If climbers make a reservation for a climb, climbing fees are due at the time of the reservation. Backpackers, and anyone else who camps outside of auto campgrounds, must obtain a free Wilderness Camping Permit before camping. Permits are required year-round and are issued in person only after you arrive in the park. The permits may be obtained at the Wilderness Information Centers at Longmire and White River, or at any ranger station during the summer. Winter permits are available at the Longmire Museum.

 


source

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As I understand it, the fee increase is the first in about 10 years. Compare the cost to America's other big peak and the big "R" still comes in pretty cheap at $30. I have not seen the whole proposal, and plan on attending the Seattle public meetings to learn more about it.

 

As far as where the cash goes, I do believe that some of it does go towards the costs associated with the climbing rangers.

 

Technically the current fee is not a "rescue fee" either, nor are rescues paid for by tax payers directly. Major rescues involve the national guard and other branches of the military that DONATE their time and equipment for a chance of real rescue experience, that they otherwise would not get with simulated rescues.

 

Some of my info could be wrong, but I'll be at the Public Hearings to see what's up!!!

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After the amount of rescue action Rainier received last season, I'm not too surprised that some cost recovery would be popular at this point, regardless of Nat'l Guard involvement.

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The NoGo's and other military branches "donate" their time? For some reason I actually thought they got paid for their time. Isn't it duty time for them since they are GI's? GI=Government Issue

As well, it's the government's equipment with taxpayer fuel keeping that whirly bird in the sky.

[Roll Eyes]

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quote:

Originally posted by Pencil Pusher:

The NoGo's and other military branches "donate" their time? For some reason I actually thought they got paid for their time. Isn't it duty time for them since they are GI's? GI=Government Issue

As well, it's the government's equipment with taxpayer fuel keeping that whirly bird in the sky.

[Roll Eyes]

You are right they will get paid. But let's not imply that it is the military's duty to rescue people. You'd be surprised how many (waiting for a promotion) commanders willfully volunteer their units for things that nobody in the unit wants to take part in. I'm not saying that they don't take pride in rescuing but there are several points of view too. I'm sure the guys with families that are on call during the holidays are not happy if they get called away from a thanksgiving dinner or other family event to rescue someone.

 

It is taxpayer cashola and I'm interested to hear the reasons behind the fee increase. I'm still not happy that the summit registers are not wheelchair accessible [geek]

 

[ 11-25-2002, 04:13 PM: Message edited by: Cpt.Caveman ]

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quote:

Originally posted by Cpt.Caveman:

I'm still not happy that the summit registers are not wheelchair accessible
[geek]

Good point, let's start hauling gravel up there.

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I figured I would get the "since it's the military it's the taxpayers money" thing. I think that I should clarify my point.

 

The military guys get paid (read: the taxpayer pays) whether they are rescuing someone off rainier or if they are out on training exercises somewhere else.

 

The government allows them to take part in rescues for "real experience". So technically yes the taxpayers pay for the time, fuel, equipment and such, but it would be paid for anyway since they would be out training somewhere.

 

[ 11-25-2002, 05:47 PM: Message edited by: hikerwa ]

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"I'm still not happy that the summit registers are not wheelchair accessible"

 

Is this point, re The Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), not just as valid as radical environmentalist's readings of The Wilderness Act? I am happy when I see the ADA used to blunt obnoxious interpretations of The Wilderness Act of 1964.

 

[ 11-25-2002, 07:26 PM: Message edited by: Fairweather ]

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quote:

Originally posted by Fairweather:

"I'm still not happy that the summit registers are not wheelchair accessible"

 

Is this point, re The Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), not just as valid as radical environmentalist's readings of The Wilderness Act? I am happy when I see the ADA used to blunt obnoxious interpretations of The Wilderness Act of 1964.

I dont know about that act. But maybe [Cool]

 

[ 11-25-2002, 08:00 PM: Message edited by: Cpt.Caveman ]

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Paying to play is no fun but I guess some congresspersons have decided that's the way it will be.

 

The park's reasons for the fee increase are here . They do seem to have thought this one through and the reasons for the fee increase are to better fund the climbing ranger program and beytter address resource protection. If the info here is accurante the program is not now covering its cost, but would cover its cost and allow some expansion at the increased fee.

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quote:

Originally posted by Fairweather:

"I'm still not happy that the summit registers are not wheelchair accessible"

 

Is this point, re The Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), not just as valid as radical environmentalist's readings of The Wilderness Act? I am happy when I see the ADA used to blunt obnoxious interpretations of The Wilderness Act of 1964.

Here! Here! I am in a wheelchair at the present time! More power to us!

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Note the contact point for providing comments at the bottom of the link that Rick Sharpless provided.

 

quote:

Comments

 

We appreciate your comments and views. Please e-mail your comments to Chief Ranger's Office (
) or send them by mail to Mount Rainier National Park, Chief Ranger's Office, Tahoma Woods, Star Route, Ashford, WA 98304.

I don't think the bureaucrats realize that fees are not universally supported.

 

I believe that more fees will actually increase the amount of services being asked of the Park and hence the cost needed to provide them. Part of this I think would be due to the fee promoting a caste system among climbers. Experienced climbers that get out all the time might object to the fees, and choose to climb elsewhere or not pay the fee and therefore not register. Folks that have lots of money might not object, but those same people might not be the most experienced either (they have money but not as much time to recreate).

 

Why? A $30 fee is substantial. Anyone that pays it will be motivated to go up, no matter what. You can't just decide the "weather just isn't cooperating today, I'll come back in a few days" because the single climb fee is non-refundable nor can it be converted into an annual pass. This financial pressure could encourage more folks to push their comfort level and may precipitate rescues or accidents.

 

Another observation, if you look at their pie-chart, notice that of the climbers on the mountain, 75% are traveling routes that pass through Camp Muir. You may not recall, but when they initially started the climbing fee program, it was due to a reaction to the cost of some high profile rescues at Denali and the potential for the same at Rainier. As a consequence, my understanding was that RMI was exempted from it under the excuse that their guides often contributed to manpower for rescues. Does anyone know if this is still the case?

 

[ 11-26-2002, 12:30 PM: Message edited by: mtnnut ]

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Maybe the should build a better and larger hut at Muir and Shurman then charge 15$ extra if you stay in that. Otherwise keep it at 15$ for not using it. I bet if they built a good hut like the ones I see in BC then people might be willing to pay the fee....

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If it costs $30 per climber per climb to keep rangers in the office and toilets on the mountain - then remove them. I'll help.

 

Look at the MORA table of "public expectations". Note how they have created a "need" then ask for money to fund it.

 

Just say "No!" to bureaucratic greed and empire building.

 

 

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