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3.2M Visited Rocky Mountain Park In 2012

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Kyle Patterson, Public Information Officer/Management Specialist at Rocky Mountain National Park, shared this photo taken at Rocky Mountain National Park on May 12, 2011.

Kyle Patterson, Public Information Officer/Management Specialist at Rocky Mountain National Park, shared this photo taken at Rocky Mountain National Park on May 12, 2011.

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ROCKY MOUNTAIN NATIONAL PARK, Colo. (AP) — The National Park Service estimates more than 3.2 million people visited Rocky Mountain National Park last year.

Park officials said Wednesday they changed the way they count the overall number of visitors last year, making accurate comparisons to previous years impossible.

But officials say statistics at individual park entrances can still be compared year-to-year.

The Beaver Meadows entrance, the park’s busiest, recorded 1.3 million visitors, down almost 18 percent from 2011. The Fall River entrance was down 1 percent to about 805,000 and Grand Lake was up more than 3 percent to about 432,000.

Chris Chaney of Arvada took this photo in Rocky Mountain National Park on Sept. 23. It shows Longs Peak from near Dream Lake.

Chris Chaney of Arvada took this photo in Rocky Mountain National Park on Sept. 23. It shows Longs Peak from near Dream Lake.

Park officials say unusual weather, construction on a major park road and wildfires in and outside the park affected visitor numbers.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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