Anyone Get Weekday Walkup Permits Lately?

Posted by: Snacking Bear

Anyone Get Weekday Walkup Permits Lately? - 09/05/18 02:07 PM

Hello,

I've gotten walk ups many times before. I have also had considerable luck grabbing permits as they pop up on the site in preceding weeks.

The numbers indicate my chances for getting a walk up permit the last Thursday of September are pretty good, but the fact that I have checked the website for released permits multiple times in past months, and haven't even seen one is concerning.

So here is my question: Has anyone gotten walk-ups lately during the week? Has it seemed harder to do than in previous years?

I'm in need of 3 permits for Thursday Sept 27.

TIA
Posted by: Steve C

Re: Anyone Get Weekday Walkup Permits Lately? - 09/05/18 08:28 PM

Joshua, people just don't bother going online and releasing any slots, since there is no incentive to do that. IF rec.gov would give a small refund, they'd definitely make a profit, because the slots could then be sold again. But I am told that giving money back is a crazy big deal. ...you know, all those online stores never do it (not) wink

The only true indicator you can use is the unused permits pages. And also, watch for returned slots online in the last two weeks before you go. That's when a few people go online and confirm their reservations, and some will return some or all their slots (but it's just rare).
Posted by: Snacking Bear

Re: Anyone Get Weekday Walkup Permits Lately? - 09/06/18 08:16 AM

The numbers look real good, but it just seems to me that in years past when I would be looking online over a period of weeks I would see 1 or 2 permits pop up here or there. Just not this year.

More of a feeling than a reason I guess.
Posted by: futbol

Re: Anyone Get Weekday Walkup Permits Lately? - 09/06/18 10:28 AM

A month ago we were unable to get walk-up overnight permits during the week, but at 2pm everyone at the visitor center received day hike permits.

The USFS rep told everyone to relax as there were enough for all.

We were a hiking group of 3.
Posted by: Snacking Bear

Re: Anyone Get Weekday Walkup Permits Lately? - 09/06/18 01:08 PM

Thanks!
Posted by: jaym

Re: Anyone Get Weekday Walkup Permits Lately? - 09/10/18 01:37 PM

It seems that it would make sense to put down a reservation deposit ($50?). If you pick up your permits you get it back, if you release your slots you get it back.
Posted by: futbol

Re: Anyone Get Weekday Walkup Permits Lately? - 09/11/18 01:14 AM

Last Sunday at the 2pm day hike lottery everyone was issued a permit. The USFS rep said the only problem would be if someone had a 15 person group, then permits might not be available for every group.

There were ~20+ people waiting.

I asked for a North Fork visiting Mt Russell, but day hikes in the Whitney Zone allow you to visit any trail. My permit was the same as someone hiking the main trail.
Posted by: futbol

Re: Anyone Get Weekday Walkup Permits Lately? - 10/17/18 02:20 PM

Originally Posted By: Steve C
Joshua, people just don't bother going online and releasing any slots, since there is no incentive to do that. IF rec.gov would give a small refund, they'd definitely make a profit, because the slots could then be sold again. But I am told that giving money back is a crazy big deal. ...you know, all those online stores never do it (not) wink

The only true indicator you can use is the unused permits pages. And also, watch for returned slots online in the last two weeks before you go. That's when a few people go online and confirm their reservations, and some will return some or all their slots (but it's just rare).


Since recreation.gov went to a whole new online reservation system, I was unable to interactively return 2 of the 3 permit res that I had for overnight main trail Mt Whitney for this week (changing group size from 3 to 1). So, I called the visitor center a week in advance and returned those two via phone. The surprise? I received a refund for those, even though the permit res said 'no refunds'.

I hope this is a change in policy, because it is definitely for the better.