news shenandoah national park evaluating day use ticketing system

Shenandoah National Park evaluating day-use ticketing system  

shenandoah national park
From the Valley webcam screenshot

Shenandoah National Park implemented a pilot ticketing program to manage visitation to Old Rag, one the park’s most popular hiking opportunities in March 2022.

As was discussed during the civic engagement process, the requirement for a day-use ticket at Old Rag ended Nov. 30.

The pilot program was instituted to address congestion and visitor safety concerns to ensure a high-quality visitor experience and protect park resources.

The pilot limited visitation to this portion of the park to 800 people per day.

During the pilot, park staff gathered data which they will evaluate over the next few months. The park will share the data and seek input from the public in early 2023. The information collected will help park staff decide if the ticketing system should be continued permanently or if the program needs to be modified.

“We appreciate everyone’s cooperation while we tested a means to ensure a high-quality visitor experience and protect park resources at Old Rag,” said Park Superintendent Patrick Kenney. “The information gathered during the pilot will help inform the decision-making process.”


Crystal Graham

Crystal Abbe Graham is the regional editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1999 graduate of Virginia Tech, she has worked as a reporter and editor for several Virginia publications, written a book, and garnered more than a dozen Virginia Press Association awards for writing and graphic design. She was the co-host of "Viewpoints," a weekly TV news show, and co-host of Virginia Tonight, a nightly TV news show. Her work on "Virginia Tonight" earned her a national Telly award for excellence in television.