Park Sets Visitation Record in 2016

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Date: March 14, 2017
Contact: John Patmore, 906-387-2607, ext. 1203

Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore received a record 777,428 visits in 2016, the park's 50th anniversary and National Park Service's centennial year...

The park had a strong increase in visitation in 2015 that continued through 2016, due in part to the centennial Find Your Park/Encuentra Tu Parque campaign lauched with the National Park Foundation which reached new audiences and highlighted some of the lessor known parks like Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore.

Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore visitation highlights included a record:

  • 777,428 visits in 2016 - up 7.5% compared to 2015 (723, 178 visits), and 47% over the 527,897 visits in 2014.
  • 21,000 backcountry camper overnights
  • 22,000 overnighted in our drive-in campgrounds
"We expected the trend in more visitors to continue from 2015 into 2016 as the NPS celebrated its Centennial," said acting superitendent John Patmore, "but these numbers really show how much of a draw Pictured Rocks and the beautiful resources oft he UP are to so many."

Visitation increased throughout the National Park Service (NPS) system - reaching a record 330 million visitors in 2016.
  • 330,971,689 recreation visits in 2016 – up by 23.7 million visits (7.7%) over 2015.   
  • 382 of the 417 parks in the National Park System count visitors and 77 of those parks set a new record for annual recreation visits. This is about 20% of reporting parks.
  • 4 parks had more than 10 million recreation visits (1% of reporting parks) – Golden Gate NRA, Blue Ridge Parkway, Great Smoky Mountains NP, George Washington Memorial Parkway.
  • 80 parks had more than 1 million recreation visits (21% of reporting parks)

Top Ten All NPS Units in 2016  
Golden Gate NRA – 15,638,777                                         
Blue Ridge Parkway – 15,175,578                                     
Great Smoky Mountains NP – 11,312,786                         
George Washington Mem Parkway – 10,323,339              
Gateway NRA – 8,651,770                                                   
Lincoln Memorial – 7,915,934                                             
Lake Mead – 7,175,891                                                        
Grand Canyon NP – 5,969,811                                           
Natchez Trace Parkway – 5,891,315                                  
Vietnam Veterans Memorial – 5,299,713                              

Detailed park visitation information and additional information on how these statistics are calculated is available online at


Last updated: March 17, 2017

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