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Park seeking public comment on managing Pictured Rocks visitor increase

Flickr User Joel Feenstra

Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore has experienced a dramatic increase in visitors over the last several years. To stay ahead of the increase, the park is seeking public comment on how to manage the increase in foot traffic.



Park officials said more than three quarters of a million people visited Pictured Rock last year. The park has seen a 50 percent increase in visitors since 2014, the largest spike in at least two decades.

Susan Reece is Chief of Interpretation and Education at Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. She said visitorship this year will remain high.

“For 2018 we are expecting similar numbers, we really don’t know if they’ll climb dramatically or anything like that but we are expecting us to stay in that 700-thousand plus visitors.”

Reece said other national parks in the state are experiencing similar trends, with Sleeping Bear Dunes visitorship reaching over one (point) six million last year compared to one (point) four million in 2014.

She said the increase in tourists could make park maintenance difficult with more wear and tear of beaches and trails.

Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore is taking public comment until June 6, more information is here.