Show simple item record

dc.contributor.authorMeadema, Fletcher P.en
dc.contributor.authorMarion, Jeffrey L.en
dc.contributor.authorArredondo, Johanna R.en
dc.contributor.authorWimpey, Jeremy F.en
dc.description.abstractThis research investigates the influence of layout and design on the severity of trail degradation. Previous trail studies have been restricted by relatively small study areas which provide a limited range of environmental conditions and therefore produce findings with limited applicability; this research improves on this limitation by analyzing a representative sample of the Appalachian Trail with significant topographical, ecological, use-related, and managerial diversity. Many trail science studies have also focused on a singular form of trail degradation, whereas this study investigates all three core types of trail impact: trail soil loss, widening and muddiness. Relational analyses with all three indicators provide a more cohesive understanding of trail impact and reveal interrelationships between trail degradation processes. ANOVA testing of the mean values for these trail impact indicators across categories of influential independent factors confirms and refines the relevance of core trail design principles, specifically the sustainability advantages of trails with low grades and side-hill alignments. Findings also reveal and clarify the importance of landform grade in determining the susceptibility of trails to degradation and the influence of routing decisions; these relationships have received relatively little attention in the literature. The results also reveal several methodological considerations for trail alignment metrics and trail impact indicators.en
dc.description.sponsorshipUS National Park Service; Appalachian Trail Conservancyen
dc.rightsCreative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedicationen
dc.subjectTrail impacten
dc.subjectSustainable trail managementen
dc.subjectRecreation ecologyen
dc.subjectVisitor impact managementen
dc.subjectTrail designen
dc.titleThe influence of layout on Appalachian Trail soil loss, widening, and muddiness: Implications for sustainable trail design and managementen
dc.typeArticle - Refereeden
dc.contributor.departmentForest Resources and Environmental Conservationen
dc.description.notesWe thank Chris Carr for collaboration and assistance in sampling, protocol development, and fieldwork, and Brian Peterson, Dylan Spencer, 'Caitlin Burroughs, Mary-Ellen Bumette, and Mitch Rosen for their dedicated assistance collecting field data. This study was funded by the US National Park Service, with guidance, collaboration, and contracting support provided by the Appalachian Trail Conservancy. Use of trade, product, or firm names is for descriptive purposes only and does not imply endorsement by the US Government.en
dc.title.serialJournal of Environmental Managementen
dc.description.adminPublic domain – authored by a U.S. government employeeen

Files in this item


This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show simple item record

Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication
License: Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication