Publication Details

Human preference for ecological units: patterns of dispersed campsites within landtype associations on the Chippewa National Forest

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Whitcomb, Lisa; Parker, Dennis; Carr, Bob; Gobster, Paul; Schroeder, Herb

Year Published

2002

Publication

In: Todd, Sharon, comp., ed. 2002. Proceedings of the 2001 Northeastern Recreation Research Symposium. Gen. Tech. Rep. NE-289. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northeastern Research Station. 429-434.

Abstract

Forest Service landscape architects sought a method for determining if people showed a preference for certain landscape-scale ecosystems and if ecological classification units could be used in visual resource management. A study was conducted on the Chippewa National Forest to test whether there was a systematic relationship between dispersed campsite locations and landtype associations (LTA) (most National Forests allow "free-choice" camping; sites with repeated use are inventoried and monitored as "dispersed campsites"). A statistically significant pattern exists in dispersed campsite locations as a function of LTAs. End moraine and sand plain LTAs contain the most campsites, while people apparently show little inclination to pitch their tents in the peatlands and ancient lakeplains. The test reinforces many conclusions from existing landscape preference research, such as people's preference for water bodies (Kaplan & Kaplan, 1989; Herzog, 1985; USDA, 1974; Ellsworth, 1982). The findings also indicate that landscape scale management of visual resources using Ecological Classification and Inventory units may be appropriate and that LTAs could be used as a forest planning unit that "links" the social and natural environment.

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Citation

Whitcomb, Lisa; Parker, Dennis; Carr, Bob; Gobster, Paul; Schroeder, Herb 2002. Human preference for ecological units: patterns of dispersed campsites within landtype associations on the Chippewa National Forest. In: Todd, Sharon, comp., ed. 2002. Proceedings of the 2001 Northeastern Recreation Research Symposium. Gen. Tech. Rep. NE-289. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northeastern Research Station. 429-434.

Last updated on: September 1, 2009