The Boise National Forest will begin a recreation survey in early October to see how people are using the national forest, which is just north and east of Boise.
Forest Service employees will gather information in developed and dispersed recreation sites or along forest roads.
They will wear bright orange vests and be near a sign that says “Traffic Survey Ahead”. A similar survey was conducted 5 years ago.
The confidential survey, which takes about 8 minutes, will ask where visitors went and did on forest lands, how many people they traveled with, how long they stayed, what other recreation sites they visited, and how satisfied they were with the facilities and services provided. About a third of the visitors will be asked to complete a confidential survey on recreation spending during their trip.
Information gathered provides an estimate of how many people actually visit federal lands and what activities they pursued. It also includes how satisfied people were with their visit and the economic effect on the local economy.
The periodic on-going national forest survey was last conducted in 2009. The current survey updates information previously gathered and looks at recreation trends over time.
Information collected is used in local forest planning, at the state level, and even by Congress. The information helps managers provide better service.
It’s important to tell Forest Service employees the importance of federal public lands and the need to perserve them for future generations.
Recreationists need to let the agency know how they enjoy public lands. I’m always amazed at the number of people who don’t sign in at trailheads in national forests. It’s another way for federal officials to learn how many people are using an area and how many improvements and how much maintenance recreation sites should get.
You can see more about the survey HERE
Photo by Pete Zimowsky/Idaho Statesman