Recreation.gov just launched Availability Alerts, a way to get notified when sold-out campsites become available!
See, most campground reservations open six months in advance. But for popular locations such as Yosemite Valley, campgrounds are so popular that they sell out within minutes. However, plans change, and people often cancel their reservation, making it possible to snag a last minute campsite.
Recreation.gov’s Availability Alerts make it easier to know when campsites are canceled, so you don’t have to check the website constantly. Here is how it works.
From any campground page, click the “Availability Alert” button. For example, here is Yosemite’s Upper Pines Campground:
A modal opens up. From there, fill-out your desired arrival date and duration of stay. The alert will use the filters you selected on the previous page, so you can, for example, receive alerts only for sites with a power outlet. Click “Save Alert”.
If you’re lucky, you’ll receive an email from Recreation.gov. It looks something like this:
Unfortunately, Recreation.gov doesn’t book campsites for you. You must click “View and Book Campsite” to open Recreation.gov and manually book the campsite.
As you can see, you’re not the only one getting this email. 309 other people also received it. If you want to be the first to book the campsite, you’ll have to be quick.
Recreation.gov doesn’t yet have alerts for backcountry permits. But you can easily create alerts using Outdoor Status. They work the same way as Recreation.gov’s alerts, except that we send you SMSs instead of emails so you can snag that permit even faster.
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