Glacier National Park visitation topped 900,000 in August

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Looking over Two Medicine Lake in Glacier National Park.

Fires and smoke aside, Glacier National Park saw 908,479 visitors in August, a 21.4 percent increase over last year.

Visitation to St. Mary jumped a whopping 58 percent, further bolstering the theory that more Canadians this summer were visiting the Park. Two Medicine was up 27 percent and Many Glacier was up 6.6 percent.

The west entrance was up about 5 percent over last year. It continues to be the busiest entrance in Glacier, with 1,153,382 visitors to date.

August was the second busiest month ever in Glacier, bested only by July, which saw 1.09 million people. Glacier is the first western park to top 1 million visitors in a month, superintendent Jeff Mow recently noted.

Not even Yellowstone has seen more than 1 million visitors in a month.

To date, about 2.8 million people have visited Glacier this year.

September in Glacier promises to be off, as wildfires have closed most of the west side of the Park, including the west half of the Going-to-the-Sun Road.

Heavy smoke has also made the past week or so quieter. Though there were still a lot of visitors to places like Two Medicine last week. Even though skies were smoky, at least visitors could see the mountains.

Things could return to a more normal state by week’s end, with rain the forecast.

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