Yellowstone visitation up slightly in September

Visitation numbers for September increased slightly in Yellowstone National Park compared to last year. The overall increase for September 2016 totaled 3.17 percent over September 2015. The first eight months of 2016 are up 4.1 percent compared to the previous year, according to a statement released by the park’s public affairs office.

Two of the park’s five entrances (South Entrance and Northeast Entrance) showed a slight decrease in vehicles for the month of September compared to September 2015. The South Entrance showed a decrease because it was closed for three days last month due to fire activity south of the park.

The most striking increase in vehicle traffic was with buses. A total of 2,361 buses were in the park this September compared to 1,934 buses in September 2015 – a 22 percent increase from 2015.

Month Recreational

Visits 2016


Visits 2015

January 30,621 28,091 9%
February 36,327 34,343 5.7%
March 22,924 22,989 (1%)
April 59,253 46,600 27%
May 444,630 386,064 15.2%
June 838,316 780,768 7.37%
July 995,917 980,702 1.5%
August 841,036 854,409 (1.5%)
September 701,754 680,213 3.17%
Total (Year-To-Date) 3,970,778 3,814,178 4.1%

While many factors could be at play, park managers point to the National Park Service’s Centennial year, marketing and tourism promotions by the states of Montana and Wyoming, and lower gas prices as influences in the record number of visits to Yellowstone so far this year. For additional park visitation data and information on how these statistics are calculated, go to

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