Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design


Agricultural and Resource Economics

Committee Chair

Robert C Burns

Committee Co-Chair

Chad D Pierskalla

Committee Member

David A Smaldone


The purpose of this study was to provide data to the US Forest Service about summer recreational use of the Wenaha Wild and Scenic River in eastern Oregon, and to determine if use and use levels were appropriate according to relevant legislation and policies. The Umatilla National Forest is the administrative authority of the river and is required to complete a Comprehensive River Management Plan for this river. At the time of data collection this Draft Environmental Analysis (EA) was being developed. The Final EA was implemented July, 2015.;Recreation surveys were collected at trailheads and other developed and undeveloped recreation areas that access the river corridor during the summer of 2014. The survey instrument asked visitors questions pertaining to sociodemographic items, group size and composition, trip characteristics, satisfaction with facilities and services, motivations to visit, and perceptions of crowding and conflict. Visitors were also asked about activities they participated in and where they recreated in the study area. Vehicle counts at trailheads were conducted to provide additional data about visitor capacity for the river and Wenaha-Tucannon Wilderness, which encompassed part of the study area. Observational data was recorded as supplementary if it was determined to be inconsistent with relevant management plans.;Quantitative data was analyzed in concert with relevant guiding documents and policies to determine if recreational use and use levels were appropriate for the study area, which included lands managed by the US Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, state of Oregon, and private lands. The document review included analysis of federal legislation (Wilderness Act and Wild and Scenic Rivers Act), management plans (Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife and county plans) and policies (including Forest Service directives, public use (fire) restrictions, and Oregon Parks and Recreation Administrative Rules). The Appropriate Use Protocol developed by Haas and the Federal Interagency Task Force on Visitor Capacity on Public Lands (2002) was used to determine if use and use levels were appropriate.;Quantitative data supported the conclusion that recreational use and use levels were appropriate in this low-use, highly protected area. Supplementary qualitative data included a small number of observations pertaining to vehicle and campsite use that were inconsistent with standards or guidelines as defined by legislation, management plans, or policies that apply in the area.