Project Managers' Survey Results and Discussion Banner

Issues Regarding Collection of Visitor Data

    Corps natural resources managers use standardized tools to collect visitor use and satisfaction data on their projects. To help direct ongoing efforts of the RMSP, project managers were asked to characterize their need and use of data concerning recreation visitors. Their responses are summarized in the following tables.

  • Visitors of interest
    Most data collected at Corps projects are associated with visitors to Corps-managed recreation areas. Here managers assess their comparative interest in visitor data associated with recreation areas that are not managed by the Corps, dispersed use recreation, etc.

    Comparative usefulness of information in regard to different visitor groups. (Question 17)
    Visitors To: Rating*
    Corps-managed recreation areas 8.07
    Visitor Centers 7.76
    Undeveloped lands and wildlife management areas (dispersed use) 6.78
    Recreation areas managed by outgrant partners 5.98
    Concessionaire-managed recreation areas 5.50
    * Rating options ranged from 0 to 10 where 0 = not useful, 5 = moderately useful, and 10 = extremely useful.

  • What managers want to know about visitors:
    A comparative summary of the kinds of information that manager's want regarding their project visitors and the spatial scale at which they want it.

    Importance of different kinds of information about project visitors (Questions 12-16).
    Information Category Project-Wide By Recreation Area
    Overall* By Activity* Overall* By Activity*
    Visitor Satisfaction 7.83 7.81 8.44 8.34
    Visitation Estimates 6.75 6.60 7.21 6.93
    Economic / Benefits 6.80 6.33 6.19 6.19
    Visitor Activities 6.38 - 6.71 -
    Demographics 5.35 5.30 5.66 5.63
    * Rating options ranged from 0 to 10 where 0 = not useful, 5 = moderately useful, and 10 = extremely useful.

  • Visitor activities:
    Eight standard visitor activities are currently tracked in Corps visitor use surveys. Here managers rate the value of these standard categories on their projects.

    Comparative value of activities currently tracked in visitor use surveys (Question 18).
    Activity Rating
    Boating 6.91
    Fishing 6.89
    Picnicking 6.72
    Camping 6.70
    Sightseeing 6.54
    Hunting 6.21
    Swimming 6.14
    Water-skiing 5.20
    Note. Rating options ranged from 0 to 10 where 0 = not useful, 5 = moderately useful, and 10 = extremely useful.

  • Additional activities of interest:
    A summary of other recreation activities that managers would like to track as part the visitor use survey.

    Additional recreation activities of interest to project managers (Question 21).
    Click here to access individual responses.
    Activity Category Number of Responses Most Often Listed Activities
    Trail or Backcountry (unmotorized) 48 Hiking (27), Horseback riding (16), Mountain biking (8)
    Park Users 28 Bicycling (9), Golf (2), Walking/jogging (2), Playground (2), Roller skating (2)
    Water Sports 25 Personal watercraft (10), Windsurfing (3)
    Wildlife Watching 25 Bird watching (15)
    Other Responses 17 Tourist vs. local visitors (1), Size/type camping equipment (1), Parking (1), Economic benefits (1), Dispersed use (1), Beach usage (1), etc.
    None, N/A, etc. 17  
    Group Activities 16 Special events (3), School groups (3), Interpretative programs (3)
    Winter Sports 11 Snowmobiling (5), Cross-country skiing (5)
    Off Road (motorized) 9 ATV (7)
    Total 196  

  • Manager's comments about visitor surveys:
    A summary of manager comments and suggestions regarding visitor data.

    Comments and suggestions regarding the collection and use of visitor monitoring information at Corps projects (Question 22).
    Click here to access individual responses.
    Comment Number of Responses
    Need to update Visitation Surveys 13
    Accuracy of Visitation Surveys 13
    Funding / Staffing for Surveys 10
    Value of Surveys to Projects 8
    Need For Dispersed Use Surveys 8
    Need for Additional Types of Information 4
    Recommended Frequency of Surveys 4
    Need for Visitor Center Surveys 3
    Other Comments 14
    Total 77


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Updated: April 11, 2003