Surveys of visitors to National Forests in Colorado, Idaho, and Wyoming were conducted to determine whether non-motorized recreation visitation responded to different fire ages and fire intensities. Actual and intended behavior data was combined using a negative binomial count data travel cost model. The intended behavior trip questions involved changes with the presence of a high-intensity crown fire, prescribed fire, and a 20-year-old high-intensity fire at the area they were visiting. Using the estimated recreation demand function, fire age had a statistically significant effect on the demand of non-motorized recreation users, holding other site attributes such as forest type constant. The temporal pattern revealed an initial positive visitation response to recent fires, with decreasing visitation for the next 17 years, followed by an eight year rebounding in use. Statistical tests for transferability indicate significant differences in number of trips and price slopes between Wyoming and the other two states. Thus the Idaho and Colorado demand functions and benefit estimates ($127 and $108 per trip, respectively for Idaho and Colorado) suggest limited transferability with each other but notwith Wyoming ($2.18 per trip).
Loomis, John B.; Englin, Jeffrey; McDonald, J.; Hilger, J.; Gonzalez-Caban, Armando. 2000. Testing transferability of forest recreation demand in three intermountain states with application to forest fire effects - Benefits and costs of resource policies affecting public and private land, 13th interim report. Western regional research publication W-133. 2000 February 28-March 1; Department of Applied Economics, University of Minnesota. St. Paul, MN. p. 118-142.