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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Natural resource capability and user characteristics as an integrated basis for outdoor recreation planning : a case study of Galiano Island. Foster , Lawrence Victor


In the field of outdoor recreation, the problem of increasing user demand for the use of a limited supply of available and appropriate resources is becoming of growing concern. Furthermore, numerous studies have illustrated that excessive use of recreational resources can cause degradation of the physical resource base and result in decreased user enjoyment of the recreation experience. These conditions indicate the need for effective evaluation and allocation of the supply of recreational resources. This will provide for a sustained optimal flow of recreation benefits, and minimization of degradation of resource quality. The major premise of the thesis submits that for purposes of outdoor recreation planning for Galiano Island an integrated approach to natural resource evaluation, based on an ecological framework and incorporating consideration of the activity and user characteristics, can be utilized to optimize resource utility and derived user satisfaction. The methodology of the study include four phases; synthesis of present techniques of natural resource evaluation, identification of the characteristics of the physiographic constituents of the resource base which influence recreational use, assessment of the activity participation and preferences of selected referent recreationist groups, and integration of these elements into a comprehensive approach to outdoor recreation analysis. The natural resource base of Galiano Island, in the British Columbia Gulf Islands, and the recreationists utilizing the island for cottaging, camping and boating activities are selected for the case study. The analysis of the resource base indicates that spatial differentiation on the island, on the basis of physiographic characteristics, provides a good means by which to allocate the selected activities. The data provided by the user groups serves to indicate the nature and scope of activities which provide for optimal enjoyment of the recreation experience. On the basis of the findings, a suggested development scheme for Galiano Island is prepared. The results of the study illustrate that an integrated approach to outdoor recreation planning, incorporating resource, activity and user characteristics, can provide a means by which to enhance and protect outdoor recreation values of the resource base and the recreationists alike.

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