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Yellowstone visitation down 32% in 2022

A traffic jam in West Yellowstone, Mont. as cars line up to enter Yellowstone National Park
Olivia Weitz
Yellowstone Public Radio/File photo
A traffic jam in West Yellowstone as cars line up to enter Yellowstone National Park

Year-end data from Yellowstone National park show visitation in 2022 was down about a third from 2021, the park’s busiest year on record.

Last year the park hosted 3.3 million recreation visits — well below numbers from recent years, when the park consistently saw upwards of 4 million visitors.

Park visits, according to Yellowstone National Park data

  • 2022 – 3,290,242
  • 2021 - 4,860,242
  • 2020 - 3,806,306 (The park was closed March 24 through May 17)
  • 2019 - 4,020,288
  • 2018 - 4,115,000
  • 2017 - 4,116,524

Historic flooding in mid-June closed the entire park for just over a week. While the East, South and West entrances re-opened later that month, the North Entrance did not reopen to regular vehicle traffic until Oct. 30.

The park is still developing permanent solutions for the North Entrance road.

Last year marked Yellowstone's 150th anniversary of becoming the country's first national park.

Olivia Weitz covers Bozeman and surrounding communities in Southwest Montana for Yellowstone Public Radio. She has reported for Northwest News Network and Boise State Public Radio and previously worked at a daily print newspaper. She is a graduate of the University of Puget Sound and the Transom Story Workshop.