Bryce Canyon had a record number of visitors in 1988, and park officials are giving much of the credit to "tremendous advertising efforts" by several organizations.
Bryce recorded 1,114,776 visitors during the year, a 10 percent increase over 1987. A record number of visitors was also recorded in 1987, the first year the park hosted more than one million visitors.William E. Miles, public relations official, praised the Utah Travel Council, the Grand Circle Organization, National Park concessioners and area merchants for their advertising and promotional efforts.
"Also worthy of note is a steady increase in commercial bus tours generated by touring companies in Southern California and Nevada," Miles said. "The consistent increase in numbers of bus travelers is a significant 11 percent portion of the annual visitation figures."
While the majority of people visit during the summer months, winter activities and the beauty of the snow-capped formations attribute to an increasing number of winter visitors. Miles described a winter visit to Bryce Canyon as "an unequaled experience in quiet serenity."
Cross-country skiing and snowshoe hiking are becoming more popular. Special winter activities are also sponsored, such as the Bryce Canyon Winter Festival held in mid-February. It is sponsored by the Garfield Travel Council and is highlighted by a 10-kilometer cross-country tour race and a snow sculpture contest.
The park now has well-marked cross-country ski trails that may be used throughout the winter. Most of the park's 36,000 acres offer excellent skiing conditions. Skis may be rented at Ruby's Inn near the park entrance.
Snowshoes are available without charge at the visitor center through courtesy of the Bryce Canyon Natural History Association.
Park Superintendent Bob Reynolds announced the selection of Charles Passek as supervisory park ranger and the appointment of Therese L. Johnson as resource management specialist.
Passek, a native of Minneapolis, Minn., has an in-depth knowledge of policies, procedures and visitor protection skills, said Reynolds. He will be responsible for hiring and supervising seasonal law enforcement, campground and air quality personnel, as well as fire protection, search and rescue, safety, seasonal training, resource protection and campground management.
Johnson has extensive knowledge in resource management and superior skills in field operations, Reynolds said. She will be responsible for preparing and reviewing natural resource components of the management plan, implementing management actions and programs, and coordinating natural science projects and programs that have potential impacts on resources. She is a native of Littleton, Colo.