Effects of weather factors on recreation participation in a humid subtropical region

  • Ramesh PaudyalEmail author
  • Taylor V. Stein
  • Birendra KC
  • Damian C. Adams
Original Paper


This study examines effects of weather, temporal factors, and gasoline price on outdoor recreation participation by using a time series model. We obtained more than 5 years of daily outdoor recreation visitation data by using infrared mechanical counters on a section of the Florida National Scenic Trail (FNST). Results showed that days with daily maximum temperatures of 16–22 °C brought the largest number of visitors, which suggests this is the most comfortable range of daily maximum temperatures to recreate on the FNST. Daily maximum temperatures below 6 °C and above 31 °C and heat index values above 38 °C brought significantly lower visitor numbers, suggesting these values are temperature thresholds for this region in a recreation context. A seasonal autoregressive integrated moving average model showed significant negative effects of temperature, relative humidity, cold snaps, and gasoline price and a positive effect of weekends and public holidays on recreational visitations to this trail. Days with heavy rainfall (> 2.54 cm) or a high heat index (≥ 35 °C) were likely to negatively affect recreation participation not only on the same day, but also on the next normal weather day. These findings imply that managers of facilities that need staffing and other resources should expect to receive fewer visitors on days following adverse weather conditions, even if that day has normal weather conditions.


Nature-based tourism Weather preferences Weather thresholds Tourism climatology Decision-making Lag effect 


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Copyright information

© ISB 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of FloridaGainesvilleUSA
  2. 2.University of North TexasDentonUSA

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