Special Access Pass for Veterans with Disabilities &
Refunds for Active Duty Military On Leave
We offer free camping and free parking at day-use fee parks to these groups:
- U.S. veterans with any level of service-connected disability
- Active duty U.S. military on official leave
These benefits are handled in slightly different ways. Read on!
The Special Access Pass is for veterans with a service-connected disability. Eligible U.S. military members on leave are reimbursed for their campsite and day-use costs. Both benefits are subject to some restrictions.
What it Covers
If you are eligible, this benefit gives you free parking at the 26 state parks that charge a day-use parking fee. It also covers your camping costs in RV sites, tent campsites & standard horse camp sites. You may camp for free in a tent, RV or standard horse camp site for 5 nights at a time at a single state park, and a total of 10 nights in a calendar month, regardless of the location. If you stay longer than 5 nights at a park, you will pay the standard rate for the extra days.
What it Doesn’t Cover
This benefit does not cover yurts, cabins or other special park facilities, nor does it cover the $8 fee to make reservations or the $7 per night charge for a 2nd driven vehicle.
Getting a Pass
For U.S. veterans with a service-connected disability, here is the process:
- Obtain a letter from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs stating you have a service-connected disability.
- Fill out this application and send it to us (by mail, or in person). Or, call 1-800-551-6949 for a copy, or help.
- We process the application and send you a card in the mail. The card is valid for four years.
Getting a Refund
Members of the military on active duty and on official leave need to pay up front and then get reimbursed. After your visit, send us
- the camping or day-use receipt for the dates of your stay, and
- a letter from your CO on official letterhead stating you were on leave for the dates you visited or camped.
We must receive your refund request no later than 30 days after the last day of your stay. We send refunds within three weeks of a request.
Camping without a Pass
If you camp without your Special Access Pass (and have one, or are eligible for one, of course) you must pay up front. After your visit, you can apply for a refund. If you have not yet applied for the pass, you may include your refund request with your application. We must receive your refund request no later than 30 days after the last day of your stay. We send refunds within three weeks of a request.
Please mail all applications or refund requests to:
Oregon Parks and Recreation Department
ATTN: Veterans Pass Program
2501 SW 1st Ave. Suite 100
Portland, OR 97201-4751
How to Renew
The card expires every four years. A few months before the expiry date, we will send you a reminder postcard. You must sign the postcard and mail it back to us. (This verifies your address, and that you still plan to use the benefit.) No return postcard—no new pass.
If you have moved since you received your pass, please contact us by letter, phone or email and give us your pass number, name and new address.
Other Things To Know
- If you have a pass, carry it with you, along with photo I.D.
- The person eligible for the discount must occupy the campsite. Otherwise, the discount is invalid. Your Special Access card or leave papers are not transferable to anyone else, even other veterans.
- When you arrive at a park, you will be asked for photo ID to confirm that you are the Special Access Pass holder.
- If you lose this pass or the green placard it hangs in, please request a replacement by sending us a letter with your name, address and home phone.
- Please remember that this pass (or refund) applies only to Oregon State Parks. Other campgrounds and parks will still charge you a user fee.
- If you have any questions about the program or the Special Access Pass, please call 1-800-551-6949, Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Questions about other military-related benefits? Visit ODVA