Leave No Trace COVID-19 Research

The COVID-19 Pandemic is Changing the Way People Recreate Outdoors

On March 11th, 2020, the World Health Organization officially declared COVID-19 a pandemic. The pandemic is rapidly altering daily life and leading to changes in the way we spend time outside. In an effort to gather timely and relevant data on national recreation patterns, before, during, and after the pandemic, the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics worked quickly with its research partner, Pennsylvania State University, to offer guidance to land managers, recreation providers, and outdoor enthusiasts across the country.

The following tables, figures, and corresponding brief descriptions are intended to provide initial results of this research effort. Further results are forthcoming. As are additional surveys to track trends over time. For more information, contact Ben Lawhon, MS, Education Director, at Ben@LNT.org.