As part of its ongoing efforts to address aging infrastructure and improve the visitor experience, Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge will increase camping and day use fees.
The changes, which come in response to public comments on a fee proposal realeased in July 2019, will go into effect beginning Jan. 1, 2020. The proposal included increases in Doris Campground, Fawn Creek Youth Campground, Boulder Cabin and the Charon’s Gardens Wilderness Area. Fees in the wilderness area will only be applicable to backcountry camping permit applicants.
All of the revenue from the increase will remain in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, primarily at Wichita Mountains. The refuge plans to use the revenue from the fee increase to mitigate impacts from rising visitation, renovate aging infrastructure, provide new interpretive exhibits and improve the campgrounds and trails that visitors enjoy.
For individual sites, tent only rates will go from $8 to $12, RV pads without hookups will go from $10 to $14 and RV pads with electricity only will go from $20 to between $22 and $24.
For group sites, Fawn Creek was $5 with a reservation but will go to $30 a day. Camp Doris with electricity will remain $40. Camp Doris without electricity will go from $28 to $30. Day use of Boulder Cabin will go from $5 to $30.
Backcountry camping permit fee for overnight camping in Charon’s Gardens Wilderness Area will go from $5 to $10, and the per person user fee will go from zero to $5.