||English, D.B.K.; Kocis, S.M.; Arnold, J.R.; Zarnoch, S.J.; Warren, L.,
||Visitor Use of USDA Forest Service Recreation Areas: Methods and Results from the National Visitor Use Monitoring Effort
||Monitoring and Management of Visitor Flows in Recreational and Protected Areas
||MMV 1 - Proceedings
||One stratum of survey sites in the USDA Forest Service’s National Visitor Use Monitoring (NVUM) effort contains agency-managed elements of the National Wilderness Preservation System. Two related methods are used to estimate the amount of visitation that occurs in these areas. One utilizes annual information on the number of use permits at the sites where these are mandatory; the other employs a double-sampling approach to estimate visitation. In both cases, on-site visitor sampling is required to obtain the information necessary to estimate actual visitation. A few additional questions on the survey enable us to describe visitor demographics, evaluate customer satisfaction, and estimate economic values and impacts of these visits. The presentation discusses development of the sampling design as well as calibration issues for both use estimation methods. A comparison of the statistical accuracy and cost of each is made. Because the sample design is based on the spatial-temporal combination of Wilderness exit points and the days they are open, some analytic adjustment to the sample survey data is required (beyond simple sample means) to get results that describe the visiting population. The analytic framework is presented, along with some empirical results from the first year of sampling at six selected National Forests to give the flavor of the managerially-relevant information we have so far obtained. The presentation concludes with a discussion of how we plan to extend the analysis that can include issues such as developing models of visitor flows and relating visitation levels to perceptions of crowding.
||ILEN @ m.sokopp @ 486
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