Evaluating the Economic Impact of Outdoor Recreation in the Dolores and San Miguel Region
Partners: American Whitewater and the Colorado Outdoor Recreation Office
Group Members: Mayra Mendez, Carrie Tanner, Megan Paliwoda, Lorenzo Muñoz
The Dolores and San Miguel rivers reside in one of the most beautiful sections of the country, spanning over 200 miles throughout the four-corners region. Unfortunately, the two rivers rarely run. This is the result of multiple factors, including water rights, local agriculture, and the region’s increasingly unpredictable weather patterns. When a substantial snowpack permits, the waterways produce a robust recreation economy, responsible for healthy economic activity within the region. However, flows and access are impacted by consumptive use of its waters. This project will provide a science-based rationale for increased recreational access throughout the Dolores and San Miguel River basins. The team will meet with local stakeholders from several economic sectors, including those involved in farming and ranching who depend on the river for their livelihoods, in order to create an accurate economic impact assessment of the region.