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    Author(s): Charles Nelson; Brian Valentine
    Date: 2003
    Source: In: Schuster, Rudy, comp., ed. Proceedings of the 2002 Northeastern Recreation Research Symposium. Gen. Tech. Rep. NE-302. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northeastern Research Station. 286-290
    Publication Series: General Technical Report (GTR)
    Station: Northeastern Research Station
    PDF: View PDF  (373.3 KB)

    Description

    Through vehicle counts and windshield surveys at 43 public access points and a mail questionnaire to shoreline property owners, Michigan State University researchers estimated the recreation effort on a 55-mile stretch of Michigan's upper Manistee River from April 28 - September 3, 2001. In addition, public access point user satisfaction, perceived trends in the river environment, local spending by visitors originating outside the 3 counties adjacent to the river and the condition of public access points were assessed. Public access point visitors and property owners and their guests logged more than 1.2 million user hours. Key activities were non-motorized watercraft use (e.g., canoeing, kayaking and tubing), fishing, and nature observation. Eighty-eight percent of public access point visitors were satisfied with their experience, 5% were neutral and 6% were dissatisfied. Satisfaction was primarily attributed to the rustic nature of the river, fishing and access site maintenance. Despite high levels of use on the river, public access point users were most likely to perceive that the overall environmental quality of the river had remained the same or improved over the years they had visited the river. The river's many visitors were a boon to the local economy, spending nearly 3.5 million dollars in local businesses. Finally, by on-site inspection after the spring - summer study period, researchers judged that most public access points were safe, well maintained, and had minimal negative environmental impact from erosion.

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    Citation

    Nelson, Charles; Valentine, Brian. 2003. Assessing river recreation use and perceptions of environmental quality trends on Michigan''s upper Manistee River. In: Schuster, Rudy, comp., ed. Proceedings of the 2002 Northeastern Recreation Research Symposium. Gen. Tech. Rep. NE-302. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northeastern Research Station. 286-290

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