DEC: Lake George day use passes will now be sold online only; can buy 7 days in advance

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation announced “the transition to automated, online sales for all day use permits at the Lake George Islands.”

End of the ritual? Early morning Lake George boaters on a July 4th weekend waiting for the ranger station at Glen Island to open to grab a first-come, first-served picnic site. Under DEC’s new rules, day use passes will be sold strictly online. Mark Frost photo
“Online day use sales are anticipated to begin May 12, seven days prior to the opening of the Lake George Islands campgrounds,” said the DEC press release.

“Reservations can be booked as early as seven days prior to the day of arrival and as late as the same day. Visitors will be able to see real-time availability and even book a dock while on the water. The total fee for a day use permit is $12. All patrons wishing to acquire a permit for Lake George Islands day use will need to do so either online through ReserveAmerica by downloading the ReserveAmerica app (search for RA Camping), or by calling the Call Center at 1-800-456-CAMP (2267). No in-person day use sales will be performed at our Lake George Islands campgrounds.

“Online booking of day use will only apply to the Lake George Islands facilities. This new process will in no way change the booking of campsites at our Lake George Islands facilities, nor will it change day use sales at any other DEC campgrounds or day use areas.”

DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos was quoted, “Automating the sales of day use permits for the Lake George Islands is easier and faster for visitors. Instead of boating to an island headquarters to purchase a permit through a manual, labor intensive process, visitors can now quickly and easily book their day use permit online and spend more time enjoying the beauty of Lake George.”

More details, in reply to Chronicle queries

DEC said in response to a Chronicle inquiry that the Lake George Islands Annual Day Use Passport will still be available this season for $80 but also will be sold only online, at under “permits.”

“The passport will only allow the holder to utilize a currently unoccupied site on an as available basis. Availability of sites can change from minute to minute with real-time reservations.”

“Reservations using your Passport will no longer be permitted. If you wish to have exclusive use of a specific day use dock, you will need to book an online reservation and pay the applicable fee.”

DEC said, “We do not anticipate that the changes in Day Use will change staffing at our Island Campground locations (Glen, Long and Narrow Island Group Campgrounds), nor will the changes in any way affect how our campgrounds operate.”

It said, “Generally speaking, reactions have been favorable for this change. The public has long been asking for a more efficient way to book their day use on Lake George Islands, and DEC believes this will be a benefit to them, as well as our State resources.”

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