In a typical summer, millions of Americans head outdoors to national parks, hiking trails and rivers across the U.S. This summer, because of COVID-19 precautions, getting outdoors will be different, although how different isn’t certain.
My colleagues and I are part of a research team at Pennsylvania State University that studies outdoor recreation and park management. Our team recently conducted a national survey of more 1,000 outdoor enthusiasts across 47 states with the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics.
The survey asked several key questions that included how those who use parks were considering a return to outdoor recreation this summer and how parks might be managed for COVID-19 to ensure the safety and security of park users.
The responses to the survey suggested that this summer, we may be entering a