The Linville Gorge Wilderness Area has Updated overnight permits schedule for 2023
Beginning in April 2023, those seeking overnight permits for the Linville Gorge Wilderness Area on the Pisgah National Forest Grandfather Ranger District can expect an updated reservation process.
The system, which previously required individuals to reserve permits by calling the Grandfather Ranger District office, will now be available for advanced reservations on Recreation.gov. This change comes as a result of increased demand for permits, causing longer hold times and busy signals for individuals calling for reservations.
While the reservation process is changing, requirements for permits themselves will remain the same. Since the 1970s, the Linville Gorge Wilderness has used a quota-based permit system in order to maintain Wilderness character and ensure solitude. Permits are required for camping within the designated Wilderness boundary on Friday and Saturday nights from May to October, as well as on the Sunday of 3-day holiday weekends. However, permits are not required for day use, roadside camping, or camping on Table Rock.
Currently, the quota system allows for a total of 50 individuals to camp overnight on permit-required nights. Of that number, 70% of the quota (or 35 individuals) can reserve a permit up to one month in advance. This will include the release of permits for May 2023, which will open for reservations on Recreation.gov at 10am ET on Monday, April 3, 2023.
Last-minute permits, or 30% of the quota (15 individuals), will be available for reservation online 3 days in advance, with availability opening each Wednesday at 10am ET for the upcoming weekend. For example, permits for the weekend of May 5, 2023, will be available online on May 3 at 10am ET.
With this new reservation process in place, the Linville Gorge Wilderness will aim to streamline their permit system to make it easier for visitors to plan their trips accordingly.