River Visitor Use

River managers, river advocates, and outdoor industry outfitters and manufacturers encourage enjoyment of our nation's rivers.  When traffic increases, however, processes become necessary so the experience is fun, inspiring and safe for both the resource itself and those who enjoy it. 


Toward an Approach for Measuring Indicators of Facility Carrying Capacity in Outdoor Recreation Areas
published in the Journal of Leisure Research, 2013, Vol. 45, No. 3, pp. 345-366  (Needham, Ceurvorst, Tynon)

This article uses data from 1,399 individuals at six sites in Hawai`i to examine congruence among their encounters, norms, and satisfaction with six types of facilities (e.g., trash cans, bathrooms, signs) and the actual number of these facilities.  The majority of users recalled encountering fewer of each facility than the number they believed should be at each site (i.e., their norm) and these users were least satisfied with these facilities. When user norms were compared to the actual number of facilities, however, there were enough of most facilities to meet these norms. Read on...


Allocating River Use: a review of approaches and existing systems for river professionals

Prepared by Doug Whittaker, Ph.D. and Bo Shelby, Ph.D. Confluence Research and Consulting; July 2008

This report summarizes information about allocating use on North American rivers. The goal is to review allocation systems and public responses to them. The report describes the advantages and disadvantages of different choices in different settings, providing river professionals with the tools to assess and develop their allocation options.

The report was broken into sections to facilitate viewing over the internet. You can view the sections by clicking on any of the section descriptions listed below.  You can also download the book in its entirety here.

This resource was produced by RMS members Doug Whittaker and Bo Shelby, and was sponsored by the Bureau of Land Management.