YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK – America’s first national park is now on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Flickr. The park is using social media to help expand its reach of public information and better connect with worldwide audiences.

Through these platforms, it will share blog posts podcasts, photos and videos about popular sights, sounds and experiences, and also to get out daily information about wildlife viewing safety, road closures and other visitor news.

Since the park set up a Twitter account a few years ago to provide wildland fire information it’s gained more than 13,000 followers and now tweets on everything from road and weather conditions to wildlife and geyser updates. Within the first few days of launching its Facebook page, “likes” for Yellowstone numbered nearly 40,000.

The primary online repository for much of the park’s trip planning and other information will continue to be the park’s website at nps.gov/yell.

Follow Yellowstone at:

twitter.com/YellowstoneNPS
facebook.com/YellowstoneNPS
youtube.com/YellowstoneNPS
flickr.com/photos/YellowstoneNPS

YNP visitation up compared to last year

The park recorded 674,498 recreational visitors in June 2012, up more than 6 percent from last year, and second only to record levels reported in 2010.

The number of recreational visitors entering Yellowstone for the first six months of the year is also up compared to 2011. The park recorded 1,044,570 recreational visitors from January through June 2012, compared to 941,723 during the same period in 2011, that’s nearly an 11 percent increase.

July is typically the park’s peak visitation month, followed by August,June, September and May.

# of visitors in June, Year-to-year change

2012- 674,498, + 6.3 %
2011- 634,316, – 8.7 %
2010- 694,841, + 7.9 %
2009- 643,844, + 8.5 %
2008- 593,405, – 2.7 %
2007- 609,606