Two kayakers paddle flat water on the San Juan River. Photo by Sue Cullumber and the Share the Experience Photo Contest.

San Juan River Permits 

A permit is required year-round to float any section of the San Juan River between Montezuma Creek and Clay Hills in southeast Utah. Permits are only issued through a pre-season lottery and advance reservations to individuals 18 and older. Do not show up at the launch ramp without a permit expecting to launch or join another group. The maximum group size is 25 persons. No pets are allowed (service animals, as defined under the ADA, must be preauthorized by the Monticello BLM river office prior to arrival).  

How to Obtain a Permit

The San Juan River permit lottery and reservations are now available at www.recreation.gov. The process for obtaining a permit varies depending on the launch date of your desired trip.  

Trips Launching January 1st - April 14th

Launch reservations may be reserved in advance at www.recreation.gov, beginning December 1st at 8:00am (MT).  Full payment of per person permit fees and a $6 non-refundable transaction fee must be made at the time of transaction in order to book a permit. Please read the refund policy carefully before submitting payment. There are no per person permit fees for trips launching prior to March 1st, however, the $6 transaction fee still applies. Cancellations will be made available to other boaters within 24 hours of the cancellation.

Trips Launching April 15 - July 15 

Launch reservations are initially issued through a permit lottery. Remaining available launch dates and launch cancellations are then issued through advance reservations.

  • Lottery: Lottery applications for San Juan River permits will be accepted from December 1st to January 31st at 11:59 p.m. (MT) at www.recreation.gov. There is a $6 non-refundable transaction fee to apply. Applicants will be notified of the lottery results on their Recreation.gov accounts and via email on February 14th. Successful applicants must accept and pay the per person permit fees for their awarded reservation by March 15th at 11:59 p.m (MDT). Please read the refund policy carefully before submitting payment. Unaccepted reservations and cancellations will made available to other boaters starting March 16th.
  • Advance Reservations: Following the lottery, available launches and cancellations may be reserved in advance at www.recreation.gov, beginning March 16th at 8:00 a.m. (MDT). Full payment of per person permit fees and a $6 non-refundable transaction fee must be made at the time of transaction in order to book a permit. Please read the refund policy carefully before submitting payment. Cancellations made on or after March 16th will be made available to other boaters within 24 hours of the cancellation.

Trips Launching July 16 - December 31 

Launch reservations may be reserved in advance at www.recreation.gov, beginning March 16th at 8:00 a.m. (MDT). Full payment of per person permit fees and a $6 non-refundable transaction fee must be made at the time of transaction in order to book a permit. Please read the refund policy carefully before submitting payment. There are no per person permit fees for trips launching on or after November 1st, however, the $6 transaction fee still applies. Cancellations will be made available to other boaters within 24 hours of the cancellation.

Contact Information 

River Office Phone: (435) 587-1544 
River Office Hours: 8:00am - 12pm (MDT), Monday - Friday 
Email: blm_ut_sanjuan_permits@blm.gov

Point of Contact

Bureau of Land Management
Monticello Field Office
365 North Main
P.O. Box 7
Monticello, UT 84535

River Office Phone: (435) 587-1544 
River Office Hours: 8am - 12pm (MDT), Mon - Fri 
Email: blm_ut_sanjuan_permits@blm.gov