YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK, Wy. — 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 percent from 2008 and up 4.6 percent 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’ top 10 busiest years for recreational visitors include:
- 2009 = 3,295,187
- 2007 = 3,151,343
- 1992 = 3,144,405
- 1999 = 3,131,381
- 1995 = 3,125,285
- 1998 = 3,120,830
- 2008 = 3,066,570
- 1994 = 3,046,145
- 2003 = 3,019,375
- 1996 = 3,102,171
Visitation to Yellowstone National Park for the month of December was up 10.8 percent 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.
SOURCE: National Park Service press release