FORT COLLINS– Rocky Mountain National Park almost set another visitation record in 2017.
The Coloradoan reported Wednesday that the park’s visitation last year was less than 2 percent shy of the 4.5 million visitors it saw in 2016.
Last year was the first time since 2013 the park hasn’t set a visitation record.
The park says that visitation has increased about 40 percent since 2012. The increase has been partly attributed to Front Range population growth and recent centennial celebrations for Rocky and the National Park Service.
The increased traffic has park managers evaluating ways to protect visitors. Last summer and fall, vehicle access was restricted during congested periods in the highly trafficked Bear Lake Road corridor, Wild Basin area and Alpine Visitor Center. Park managers will do so again in 2018.