Yellowstone National Park has released visitor data for August of 2020, and despite the ongoing coronavirus cause COVID-19 pandemic, August’s numbers showed an increase over the same time last year.
According to a statement sent to media Thursday, the National Park Service says that Yellowstone hosted 881,543 recreation visits in August 2020. Officials say that this represents a 7.5% increase from August 2019, making it the second busiest August on record.
The busiest August on record was in 2017, the year of the solar eclipse.
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So far in 2020, the park has hosted 2,546,373 recreation visits, down 18% from the same period last year.
The park was closed due to health and safety reasons related to COVID-19 beginning March 24, 2020. Two Wyoming entrances opened on May 18 and three Montana entrances opened on June 1, 2020. All five entrances have been open since June 1.
The list below shows the year-to-date trend for recreation visits over the last several years (through August), as provided by the NPS:
- 2020 – 2,546,373
- 2019 – 3,114,697
- 2018 – 3,136,241
- 2017 – 3,232,707
- 2016 – 3,269,024
- 2015 – 3,133,965
The National Park Service is asking that visitors to Yellowstone recreate responsibly and reduce the spread of COVID-19.
“If you are sick, do not visit the park. Self-quarantine to avoid exposing others. Services are limited in the park,” the NPS said Thursday. “Stay informed about changes to park operations.”
More data on park visitation, including how the numbers are calculated, is available on the NPS Stats website.
The Latest Statistics from the Wyoming Department of Health:
What to do if you are feeling sick: In the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, the Casper-Natrona County Health Department says that people who are feeling sick or exhibiting symptoms should contact their primary physician.
If you do not have a primary care provider, and live in Natrona County, please contact the COVID-19 hotline, operated by the Casper-Natrona County Department of Health. The line is open Monday – Friday 8:00 am – 5:00 pm 577-9892. Hotline services are intended for Natrona County residents and may not be able to provide specific information to persons calling from out of county.
Officials ask that you please do not self-report to the Emergency Room. Persons experiencing problems breathing should call 9-11.
For general inquiries and non-symptom related questions about COVID-19, please contact the Casper-Natrona County Health Department via email: email@example.com
- Practice Social Distancing by putting distance between yourself and other people. This is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick
- Stay home if you’re sick
- Cover coughs and sneezes. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.
- Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
A list of area closures attributed to COVID-19 are available here.