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An integrated approach to assessing, managing and monitoring campsite impacts in Warren National Park, Western Australia

Smith, A.J. and Newsome, D.N. (2002) An integrated approach to assessing, managing and monitoring campsite impacts in Warren National Park, Western Australia. Journal of Sustainable Tourism, 10 (4). pp. 343-359.

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The social and ecological impacts of camping were examined in Warren National Park, Western Australia. The main objective was to apply an integrated approach to assessing campsite degradation and feed this information into a management and monitoring strategy for campsites in the park. Biophysical data were used to establish a campsite profile, providing baseline information that enabled comparison of heavy-use formal campsites with low-use informal campsites. High-use formal campsites were more severely impacted than the low-use, informal campsites. Formal sites were also larger, had experienced more tree damage and erosion, had greater soil compaction, less vegetation cover and tree seedlings, less coarse woody debris, higher riverbank degradation and more walk trails radiating from the campsite. Additionally, the low-use, informal sites had also been degraded by recreation use. Potential indicators were identified, using a social survey that enabled identification of the standards of social and resource conditions in the Warren National Park. Desired conditions were then compared to existing conditions at the campsites and relevant managerial preferences acceptable to visitors were identified in the social survey. Most of the management preferences were considered very or extremely important influences on the quality of the visitor experience.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publisher: Channel View Publications
Copyright: © 2002 A.J. Smith & D. Newsome
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