Hiker in front of Mount Adams

Winter Recreation Program

The Winter Recreation Program at Washington State Parks coordinates Sno-Parks across the state.

Winter sport enthusiasts of all ages can spice up the cold months with a variety of snow activities sponsored by Washington State parks' Winter Recreation program. In partnership with federal agencies, private landowners, and other state agencies, Washington State Parks manages Sno-Parks in seven national forests as well as state and private forest land.


Sno-Parks are cleared parking areas in close proximity to groomed and backcountry trails.  Snowmobile Sno-Parks are open to both motorized and non-motorized winter recreation.  Non-motorized Sno-Parks are only open to sports such as cross-country skiing, dog sledding, snowshoeing, and snow play.

Have you visited a Sno-Park and would you like to share your thoughts? Complete our online Sno-Park evaluation form

Program funding

The Winter Recreation Program is funded through the sale of Sno-Park Permits. Proceeds from permit sales are used exclusively to maintain and improve non-motorized Sno-Park facilities. The permits pay for snow removal, sanitary facilities, trail grooming, trail signs, mapping, parking lot construction, education, enforcement, equipment, and Sno-Park program administration.

Revenue for non-motorized Sno-Parks is spent as follows: 32% for trail grooming, 27% for snow removal and sanitation, 20% for administration, 11% for education and enforcement, and 10% for equipment reserve.

Funding is distributed annually through the Sports Funding Program.

Snowmobile registration

Your $50 registration fee and money collected from a gas tax refund fund the snowmobile program.

The gas tax refund is computed using the following formula: 135 gallons (average yearly fuel usage per snowmobile) x 30 cents per gallon of gas.

The gas tax refund and registration fees collected each year is approximately $97.12 (less up to 3%) through June 30, 2031 per snowmobile. Fees collected this year are put towards next year's snowmobile season and pay for trail grooming, snow removal, sanitation, administration, education and enforcement.

This information is brought to you in partnership with the Washington State Snowmobile Association.

Advisory committees

Washington State parks works with two volunteer committees in the development of facilities and programs (Chapter 79A.05.255 RCW). The Committees are split between motorized and non-motorized winter activities. Both types of users are represented on each committee.

For more information about meetings and contact information for your area representative, download the  Snowmobile Advisory Committee (SMAC) and the Winter Recreation Advisory Committee (WRAC).

Strategic plan

A 10-year strategic plan for the Winter Recreation program guides the management of Sno Parks. The current plan was approved by the in 2018.

Winter Recreation Strategic Plan - January 2018 (PDF, 885KB)

Winter Recreation Strategic Plan - Appendices A-F (PDF, 362KB)

SEPA determination of non-significance (PDF, 192KB)