Los Padres campsite | Credit: Courtesy

The good news is that California’s minimum wage is rising to $15.50 on January 1, 2023. The bad news is that Los Padres National Forest fees will also rise that day, in part because of wages, forest officials said.

In Santa Barbara County, a number of campgrounds are going from $30 a night to $40 a night. The group camp site rate at Sage Hill is rising from $125 to $150.

Affected Campgrounds

•  Fremont

•  Paradise

•  Los Prietos

•  Upper Oso

•  Nira

•  Davy Brown

•  Figueroa

•  Sage Hill Group site

A weekend and holiday increase was also approved, and those reservations go up $2 per night for Friday-Saturday bookings. Check the website recreation.gov for details.

The Forest Service stated the fees had remained the same since 2016 for the current concessionaire and that the increases were due to rising operational costs from inflation, fuel prices, and wages.

Undeveloped campsites in Los Padres remain free to public use, and fees for day-use sites are unaffected and stay at $10 a day.

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