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Free camping ends at Voyageurs National Park

Voyageurs National Park
Voyageurs National Park

INTERNATIONAL FALLS, Minn. (AP) - Voyageurs National Park is going to start taking reservations and charging fees for campsites.

Campsites and houseboat sites at the park on Minnesota's northern border had been first-come, first-served, and the only access is by boat. Park officials hope the certainty of a reservation system will bring in new users and revenue.

Voyageurs will start phasing in the reservation system next year for 49 campsites, including 32 on the park's four main lakes, and plans to eventually expand the system to the other 240 sites in the park. Until then, those sites will remain first-come, first served, and free.

Visitors can reserve sites six months in advance, starting in February, online at Recreation.gov or by phone at 877-444-6777. Fees range from $16 to $24 per night.

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