Outdoor Recreation Has Spiked Amid Coronavirus
“The outdoor industry is one of the few businesses that seems to be doing just as well as it has in previous summers, if not better, due to piqued interest in outdoor recreation amid the COVID-19 pandemic.” -Taylor Sienkiewicz, Summit Daily News
Sienkiewicz, T. (2020, August 2). Increased interest in outdoor recreation has created more business for local stores. Summit Daily News. Retrieved From https://www.summitdaily.com/news/increased-interest-in-outdoor-recreation-has-created-more-business-for-local-stores/
While other industries suffer amid the pandemic, interest in outdoor recreation has erupted. People seem to be replacing the lack of outdoor events, festivals, and concerts by taking up biking, hiking, camping, fishing, etc. Many local businesses have been reporting a spike in business with gear flying off their shelves faster than they can restock. With the spike in local business comes a drastic increase in usage on local trail systems, recreation areas, and reservoirs. The story is no different in Grand County where traffic counters in the Fraser Experimental Forest have been reporting a 30%-50% increase in visitation compared to previous years. Trestle Bike Park is also seeing a 10% increase in overall usage this summer compared to last. This spike in the outdoor industry may be a blessing in disguise in that people are ditching their phones, tablets, and other devices to spend time in the Great Outdoors. It also brings with it a massive boost to our local economies, something that other places are not experiencing right now. This spike also brings with it some unknowns. With such a boost in usage in such a short amount of time, our local trails and recreation areas have been used and abused. Now it is more important than ever to invest in your local trails and outdoor spaces while trying to educate new users on proper trail etiquette and stewardship.