Let's begin by stating the obvious. It is going to be a jam-packed summer in Yellowstone National Park if the spring visitor numbers are this huge.

Not only did the park break a May record, their total visitation numbers for the year are eye-popping as well. The park hosted 483,159 recreation visits in May 2021. This is an 11% increase from May 2019 (434,385 recreation visits) and the park’s most visited May on record.

You pretty much have to ignore May, 2020, due to the park being closed until May 18. Only two of the park’s five entrances were open for the rest of the month.

So far in 2021, the park has hosted 658,513 recreation visits, up 14% from 2019. And the uptrend for the first five months of the year is pretty amazing, too.

Many of you have probably already experienced some frustrations trying to make reservations for various amenities Yellowstone has to offer. And the summer months are the park's busiest season. Millions of people visit in June, July and August. If you plan to travel to Yellowstone this summer, plan ahead, expect crowding and recreate responsibly. In fact, they would be honored if you took the Yellowstone Pledge to protect yourself and the park.

Here are some of the more recent figures to give you an idea of just how much popularity the park has gained so far this year. These numbers are from January through May for each year posted:

2021 –  658,513

2020 –  145,849 (The park was closed May 1 through May 18. Two entrances were open May 18 through May 31).

2019 –  576,776

2018 –  570,823

2017 –  550,486

2016 –  593,755

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