Day-use visitors can park for free at state parks on select days in April

By Stefanie Donahue

Spring is in the air and Earth Day is just around the corner. To celebrate, the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission is lifting requirements for day-use drivers to carry a Discover Pass on Saturday, April 15 and 22.

“The free days are in keeping with legislation that created the Discover Pass,” according to a statement from Washington State Parks. “The Discover Pass legislation provided that state parks could designate up to 12 ‘free days’ when the pass would not be required to visit state parks.”

Day-use visitors at any state recreation lands managed by Washington State Parks, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) and the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) are required to purchase a day pass to park their car. Fees are $30 for an annual pass or $10 for a day pass.

The lift on restrictions only applies to Washington state parks, not land managed by the WDFW or DNR. Additionally, overnight visitors are charged fees for camping and other accommodations at all Washington state parks.

The rest of the year, the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission will lift Discovery Pass restrictions on June 3, June 10, August 25, September 30, November 11 and November 24.

The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission manages an estimated 120,000 acres, which includes more than 100 state parks and properties, including Peace Arch state park and Birch Bay state park. To learn more, visit

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