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Record Numbers Visited Yellowstone In 2009

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avatar Record Numbers Visited Yellowstone In 2009
January 05, 2010 04:10PM
Record Numbers Visited Yellowstone In 2009

Yellowstone National Park hosted a record number of visitors in 2009. Nearly 3.3 million people visited the world’s first national park last year, up 7.5% from 2008 and up 4.6% from the previous record of 3.15 million visitors set in 2007.

All park entrances recorded annual visitation increases compared to 2008 levels. Double-digit percentage increases were recorded through the Northeast and East Entrances. The West Entrance continues to be the park’s busiest, which recorded over 1.3 million recreational visitors in 2009.

Yellowstone National Park
Annual Recreational Visitors

Visitation to Yellowstone National Park for the month of December was up 10.8% compared to 2008. Of the 18,107 visitors to Yellowstone in December, 9,483 came by automobile, RV, or bus; 4,740 were passengers on snowcoaches; and 4,512 entered the park on guided snowmobile tours. Access to the interior of the park is restricted to oversnow travel from December 15 through March 15. The North Entrance and the road from Gardiner, Montana, through Mammoth Hot Springs on to Cooke City, outside the park’s Northeast Entrance, is open to wheeled vehicle travel all year.

Snowmobile and Snowcoach Visitation

Dec 2009Dec 2008Dec 2007
Snowmobiles – Daily Average183233365
Snowmobiles – Peak Day284 (12/29)426 (12/29)557 (12/28)
Snowcoaches – Daily Average323945
Snowcoaches – Peak Day56 (12/27)53 (12/27)60 (12/26)

An average of 183 snowmobiles and 32 snowcoaches a day entered the park from the December 15 start of winter season to the end of the month. Both numbers are down compared to the same period in 2008 and 2007. The peak day for snowmobiles was December 29 when 284 snowmobiles were in the park. The peak day for snowcoaches was December 27, when there were 56 snowcoaches operating in Yellowstone. Up to 318 snowmobiles and 78 snowcoaches are allowed per day this season.

Additional visitation information is available online at http://www.nature.nps.gov/stats/.
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