Located at King Gillette Ranch in Calabasas, the Santa Monica Mountains Visitor Center opened in June 2012 and is jointly operated by the National Park Service, California State Parks. Courtesy of MRCA
There is no fee to enter federal lands in the Santa
Monica Mountains, but NPS has been selling the passes, which cover entrance fees at national parks and
other federal lands.
The Santa Monica Mountains National
Recreation Area averages just over one sale per day and is not
generating any funds for park improvement projects, according to the NPS.
Superintendent David Szymanski explains that
selling federal lands passes requires an NPS ranger to be on duty at all
"Running a well-managed fee or pass program requires training,
inventories, audits and oversight," said Szymanski. “Discontinuing the
sale of these passes gives us greater flexibility to put our staff where
the demand for programs and public services are greatest.”
NPS will still maintain a strong presence at the
visitor center, but rangers from partner agencies and from the volunteer
program will now be able to fill in gaps as needed.
Most passes can be purchased either online, by phone or by mail – more information is available at www.nps.gov/findapark/passes.htm. Military passes must be purchased in person and are available at Channel Islands National Park’s visitor center in Ventura or at Angeles National Forest headquarters in Arcadia.