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National Parks In Southwest See Increase In Visitors

A record year for visitation at Zion National Park has continued through the holiday season despite snow and poor road conditions.

The Spectrum newspaper in St. George reports that recent snowstorms left parts of redrock formations and trees in park coated in snow.

A natural increase in visitors was fueled by economic growth and lower gas prices, as well as the National Park Services’  Find Your Park campaign, which helped push many parks to break new visitation records, especially in the Southwest.

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Zion National Park officials say the 4.2 million visitors through November marked a 15 percent jump from the previous year.

Bryce Canyon National Park had seen an even steeper increase, up 37 percent to 2.3  million visitors. To the south, the Grand Canyon National Parkwas up 8 percent, to 5.7 million.