Surge in Visits to Montana’s Parks

Montana’s National Parks received noteworthy visitation increases this summer

By: By Lauren Schiff

Glacier National Park // © 2009

Glacier National Park // (c) 2009

Yellowstone National Park hosted a record number of visitors this summer. Park visitation through August was up over 8 percent compared to the same period in 2008, and well above the previous January through August visitation record set in 2007.
Glacier National Park, also reported having the busiest summer they have had in 15 years. Glacier saw an 11.5 percent increase in people visiting the park from January through August. August alone had 5 percent more visitors than in 2008. Both parks have also reported that camping and RV stays have increased this year.
This boost in visitation has been credited to several factors. One factor being the fee-free weekends the Department of Interior instituted this summer to help stimulate summer vacations at the national parks given the economic conditions of the country. Another was the increase in staycations driven by local and regional travelers seeking more economical travel closer to home.
www.nps.gov/yell, www.nps.gov/glac

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