Articles | Volume 7, issue 1
Research article
 | Highlight paper
26 Jan 2016
Research article | Highlight paper |  | 26 Jan 2016

Trail impact monitoring in Rocky Mountain National Park, USA

J. Svajda, S. Korony, I. Brighton, S. Esser, and S. Ciapala

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Cited articles

Aust, M. W., Marion, J. L., and Kyle, K.: Research for the Development of Best Management Practices for Minimizing Horse Trail Impacts on the Hoosier National Forest, Management Report, US Department of Agriculture, US Forest Service, Bedford, IN, USA, 77 pp., 2004.
Ballantyne, M. and Pickering, C. M.: Recreational trails as a source of negative impacts on the persistence of keystone species and facilitation, J. Environ. Manage., 159, 48–57, 2015.
Ballantyne, M., Gudes, O., and Pickering, C. M.: Recreational trails are an important cause of fragmentation in endangered urban forests: a case-study from Australia, Landscape Urban Plan., 130, 112–124, 2014.
Barros, A. and Pickering, C. M.: Impacts of experimental trampling by hikers and pack animals on a high-altitude alpine sedge meadow in the Andes, Plant Ecol. Divers., 8, 265–276, 2015.
Barros, A., Monz, C., and Pickering, C.: Is tourism damaging ecosystems in the Andes? Current knowledge and an agenda for future research, Ambio, 44, 82–98, 2015.
Short summary
Rocky Mountain National Park is one of the most visited national parks in the United States. 95 % of the park is managed as wilderness. This paper examines the impacts of trampling on the vegetation and soil along selected trails. Trail widening and soil loss are the most visible types of trail degradation. Insights into the influence of different factors (use level, topography) can lead to the selection of appropriate management measures to avoid or minimize negative consequences.