The number of visitors being seen at the Dinosaur National Monument has increased by about 50% since the opening of its new Quarry Visitor Center.
Park officials say over the first six months of 2012, the monument has recorded 111,784 recreational visits. Compared to the same time period in 2011, that is an increase of nearly 40,000 visitors over the 75,997 number.
"That is a 47% increase over last year when the quarry was closed,” Superintendent Mary Risser explained.
Risser says recreational visits in June of this year alone totaled 44,847. “Our busiest months are still to come," Risser concluded. "Historically, when the Quarry was open, the months of July and August usually saw 50,000 to 60,000 recreational visits per month to the monument.”
In addition to the monument's revamped attraction, officials say collaboration with Uintah County Travel and Tourism and Moffat County Tourism have helped increase visitation as well.
Dinosaur National Monument covers more than 210,000 acres along the border of Colorado and Utah. In addition to its famous dinosaur fossils, the monument also features two rivers known for its white-water rafting and boating, numerous petroglyph sites and other evidence of human habitation extending back over 7,000 years.