Each summer, cars fill the roads that snake through Yosemite, clogging some of the nation’s most iconic scenery with a churning gridlock. There were days this season when more than 8,000 vehicles passed through the gates, and the park’s website warns that visitors may spend hours waiting in traffic only to reach a full parking lot. More than 4 million people visit the park annually and this year is on track to have even more tourists than last.
“I hate the comparison but it’s almost like a shopping mall,” said Scott Gediman, the park’s Public Affairs officer. “The parking lot gets full and people start circling looking for a space. People get frustrated and it becomes a dangerous situation if we can’t get shuttle buses through or ambulances through,” he added. “It affects visitor experience but also poses an operational challenge.”
The issue isn’t unique to Yosemite.
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