National park visits were up 5 percent in the first half of 1997 compared with the same period last year - despite the doubling of entrance fees, the park service says. Parks reported 112 million visitors overall through June.
The biggest gains were logged at Arizona’s Petrified Forest National Park (15 percent increase) and South Dakota’s Badlands National Park (13 percent), where fees are $10 per carload (up from $5 last year).
Significant drops were recorded at California’s Yosemite National Park (down 13 percent) and Wyoming’s Yellowstone National Park (down 5 percent). The fee for both these parks is $20 per carload (up from $10 last year).