Skip to Main Content
The changing dynamic of Latinx outdoor recreation on national and state public landsAuthor(s): David Flores; José Sánchez
Source: Journal of Park and Recreation Administration. doi: 10.18666/JPRA-2020-9807
Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
Station: Rocky Mountain Research Station
Download Publication (949.0 KB)
Related Research Highlights
The Future of Latinx Outdoor Recreation Experiences
DescriptionThe Latinx population is the largest growing minority population in the United States and is estimated to comprise 28% of the U.S. population by 2050. This continued growth is no longer due to foreign-born immigration, which accounted for 34% of all Latinx people in 2015, but rather to those born in the U.S., who comprised 66% of all Latinxs that year. Therefore, the current and future Latinx population consists of second-, third-, and fourth-generation Americans who report being fluent in English and Spanish, have higher levels of education, and earn higher incomes. As the Latinx population becomes larger and more complex, their outdoor recreation preferences and perceptions are also changing. Our survey findings reveal three significant ways that this is happening. First, Latinxs are expanding their recreation activities beyond day-use activities to engage in overnight backpacking and camping - activities that enable participants to explore a broader array of forests and natural resources. Second, despite earlier research that found significant gaps in environmental awareness among “Hispanics,” recent polling data and this study show that today’s Latinxs overwhelmingly support protecting public lands. Third, while prior research identified overt racial discrimination as a significant barrier to public land use, our findings show that the Latinx population feels welcome on federal and state public lands. Staff and other visitors are generally perceived to be friendly, which suggests a shift in a Latinx sense of belonging when visiting national forests and parks. Nonetheless, there continue to be institutional barriers and low visitation rates to public lands amongst racial and ethnic minorities. Future research on Latinx outdoor recreation on public lands could examine how new generations draw meaning from their outdoor experiences and how they are combining traditional cultural traits with more diverse and active outdoor recreation activities.
- You may send email to email@example.com to request a hard copy of this publication.
- (Please specify exactly which publication you are requesting and your mailing address.)
- We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
- This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
CitationFlores, David; Sanchez, Jose J. 2020. The changing dynamic of Latinx outdoor recreation on national and state public lands. Journal of Park and Recreation Administration. doi: 10.18666/JPRA-2020-9807.
KeywordsLatinx, outdoor recreation, race, ethnicity, public land
- Outdoor recreation and nontraditional users: results of focus group interviews with racial and ethnic minorities
- Latino outdoors: Using storytelling and social media to increase diversity on public lands
- Southwesterners’ views of threatened and endangered species management: does ethnic/racial diversity make a difference?
XML: View XML