Delta Junction state parks user fees to stay the same this year

Quartz Lake State Recreation Area, along with the Clearwater facility, generate the most revenue of all Delta-area parks. (Karla Brown/Flickr)

User fees at Delta Junction area state parks will stay the same this summer as the facilities transition to private management.

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The state announced the award of permits this week to K&K Operations to run the Big Delta State Historical Park, and to Big Dipper Adventures to operate campgrounds, boat launches and other facilities at Quartz Lake, Clearwater, Delta, and Donnelly Creek.

Northern Region State Parks superintendent Brooks Ludwig said the contractors do not plan to change user fees, but notes that the legislature allows leeway to do so in the future.

”For daily parking right now, the charge is $5 per day per vehicle and the maximum they could charge would be $10 per day per vehicle,” Ludwig said. “Boat launching right now is $15 per launch and retrieve. That could go up to $20. Firewood bundles are $8, and it can go up to $15 per bundle. Overnight camping is $15 a night. That can go as high as $30 a night.”

Delta-area parks generate an average of $80,000 a year, most of which comes from the larger Clearwater and Quartz Lake facilities. Ludwig said the contractors, are required to share revenues with the state.

”For operating the parks in the Delta area — Quartz Lake, Clearwater, Delta and Donnelly — the contractor will pay to the state a flat $2,000 permit fee,” Ludwig said. “In addition to that, they have negotiated a three percent of their gross camping revenues and three percent of their gross revenues for canoe/kayak rentals at Clearwater State recreation site will be earmarked to the state.”

Ludwig adds that 3 percent of profits from Big Delta State Historical Park Delta will go into a maintenance fund. The Delta area parks closed a month ago due to state budget cuts. State Parks says agency staff helped the contractors re-open the sites Tuesday.