filed under: economics of trails
A Journal of Leisure Research Publication
This 1997 paper estimates the value of a relatively new form of recreation: mountain biking. Its popularity has resulted in many documented conflicts, and its value must be estimated so an informed decision regarding trail allocation can be made. A travel cost model (TCM) is used to estimate the economic benefits, measured by consumer surplus, to the users of mountain bike trails near Moab, Utah.
It can be concluded that the bike trails in the Moab area produce a high value of consumer surplus to the users, $197 and $205 per trip, depending on the model specification. The corresponding annual values for the Slickrock Trail are also large, $8,422,800 and $8,770,300. Although these estimates of consumer surplus may not easily transfer to other areas, due to the uniqueness of Moab, it is still useful for land managers to note that there are large benefits resulting from land being used for mountain biking.
It should be noted that mountain biking is only one activity which can be done at Moab and, therefore, mountain biking is only part of the total economic value associated with Moab. Moab's total economic value will consist of all use values such as hiking, rafting, and sightseeing as well as existence, option, and bequest values. It should also be noted that mountain biking will have different values at different sites depending on the characteristics of the site and visitors.
This study also demonstrates the applicability of the travel cost method to estimating the economic value of mountain biking. As further studies are done at less nationally well-known sites it will be interesting to compare values. Nonetheless, it appears that devotees of mountain biking receive substantial benefit per-trip and it may be an economically competitive use of public recreation areas.
Published June 1997
Public Lands and the Continental Divide Trail Study
The primary goal of this study was to understand who uses the Continental Divide Trail (CDT), how they use it, their preferences, and the economic impact of the CDT in the region. Additional data were also collected regarding protecting public lands and using the Continental Divide Trail in Colorado.
2022 CDT Small Business Survey
From August to December 2021, the Continental Divide Trail Coalition surveyed 136 small business owners in 38 communities located along the Continental Divide Trail to learn more about how the Continental Divide Trail impacts their businesses, the local economy, and their support for public lands.
Everything you need to know about the positive impact of trails on health, environment, economics, and more.
2022 CDT Small Business Survey
As a connector of landscapes, communities, and cultures, the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail (CDT) provides a setting for community members, decision makers, conservationists, outdoor enthusiasts, and everyone connected to the lands and waters of the Divide, to come together to discuss how to steward the vital natural, cultural, and historic resources found across its entirety. With this report, the Continental Divide Trail Coalition hopes to highlight the role of the cooperative stewardship model in the management of the CDT, what we accomplished in 2021, and what we are looking forward to in 2022.