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Individual Highlight

Benefits and Losses of Wildfires on the San Jacinto Wilderness

Photo of Scenic views from San Jacinto Wilderness, San Bernardino National Forest. José J. Sánchez, USDA Forest ServiceScenic views from San Jacinto Wilderness, San Bernardino National Forest. José J. Sánchez, USDA Forest ServiceSnapshot : Forest Service scientists discovered that recently burned landscapes are attractive to forest recreationalists. This information can help fire managers understand recreational use and strategically place existing resources to help protect high-value areas.

Principal Investigators(s) :
Sanchez, Jose J.  
Research Location : Riverside/San Bernardino, California
Research Station : Pacific Southwest Research Station (PSW)
Year : 2014
Highlight ID : 687

Summary

A non-market valuation method was used to investigate the recreation values of the San Jacinto Wilderness in Southern California. The results suggest that recreationists are attracted to sites with recent wildfires that can be viewed up close. Societal benefits from recreational activity increased for sites that were partially affected by different types of wildfires. The greatest gains were observed for the most recent wildfires but wildfires causing trail closures created societal losses. Estimated total seasonal losses for complete closure of five trails, which excluded users from the land, ranged from $29,600 to $2.9 million.

Forest Service Partners

External Partners

  • Armando González-Cabán, PSW Research Station
  • Kurt Schwabe, University of California, Riverside