Visitation at Rocky Mountain National Park was up slightly last year to 3,229,618. That’s about 2 percent higher than 2011 figures. Park Spokeswoman Kyle Patterson says the increase is partially due to a change in how traffic is tracked.
She says some recreational areas like Lumpy Ride and Lily Lake on the park’s east side were not counted until last year. Additionally, visitors who enter the park on horseback or through the Hiker Shuttle rides started being counted in 2012.
Patterson says unseasonably warm spring weather helped boost traffic early in the year. Still September remained the most popular month for visitors.
The parks most popular entrance Beaver Meadows near Estes Park saw nearly an 18 percent decline in traffic. Patterson says that was due to wildfire activity including the Woodland Heights Fire and Fern Lake Fire as well as ongoing construction on Bear Lake Road.
My journalism career started in college when I worked as a reporter and Weekend Edition host for WEKU-FM, an NPR member station in Richmond, KY. I graduated from Eastern Kentucky University with a B.A. in broadcast journalism.