- Associated Press - Thursday, January 19, 2017

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) - The U.S. Forest Service has increased rates for overnight stays in some of its most popular cabins in southeast Alaska.

The adjustments are part of the agency’s plan to update rates to reflect the true cost of operating cabins, the Juneau Empire reported (https://bit.ly/2iUWPdu) Wednesday.

“Fees haven’t been increased since the ‘90s, but the cost of maintaining cabins is expensive and has gone up,” said James King, director of the Forest Service’s Recreation, Lands and Minerals. “Fuel costs, heli time, employee costs, supplies - all of these have gone up.”

Many of the Forest Service’s public use cabins in the Juneau area went up between $5 and $10 per night at the start of the year, while less popular cabins saw little or no increase. Another round of fee adjustments is planned for next year.

Forest Service officials say the new fees will also help prevent the closure of the agency’s more remote cabins, which have attracted fewer visitors over the years.

“What we’re trying to do is continue to offer this service,” King said. “We’re able to keep most of this revenue and turn around and put it back in the cabins.”

Kind said cabins within walking distance of Juneau’s road system have become more popular than those that are only accessible by boat. The agency is working to ensure it can continue to accommodate visitors visiting both types of cabins.

“We don’t have the resources we used to have, over time, so we’re trying hard to provide the best possible service to the people that we can with the limited resources that we can,” King said.


Information from: Juneau (Alaska) Empire, https://www.juneauempire.com

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