WASHINGTON - There is one big mystery following Tuesday's triumphant celebration for our championship Capitals. How many people went to the parade?
It's not an easy number to pinpoint. Both the office of D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser and the National Park Service are abstaining from estimating crowd size, while memes on social media claim the celebration was bigger than the inaugurations of President Donald Trump and President Barack Obama.
One good metric is Metro ridership.
On Tuesday, Metro counted 840,145 passenger trips. On a similar Tuesday, Metrorail would typically see 673,615 trips, a spokesperson for the transit agency said. But, Metro points out that the numbers do not reflect the actual number of riders, simply one-way trips.
Metro ridership Tuesday did not rank in the top 10 of all time, according to data compiled by WMATA. President Obama's first inauguration has held the Metro ridership record of 1.12 million trips since 2009. The Women's March--held the day after Pres. Trump's inauguration--comes in second with 1 million trips.
The agency lobbed a tweet that appeared to take a swipe at former Trump Press Secretary Sean Spicer, saying "This is the largest audience to ever witness a @Capitals victory parade. PERIOD."
On President Trump's Inauguration Day, Metrorail ridership reached 570,557.
Inauguration Day is a federal holiday. Federal employees make up a significant amount of Metro riders, which means many of them still used mass transit to commute to work Tuesday, some angrily tweeting to move the parade to a weekend.