November 6, 2013
Betty Lieurance, 970-529-4608
Visitors to Mesa Verde National Park were surveyed in summer 2012 as part of a visitor study completed by the University of Idaho's Park Studies Unit. Survey questions helped determine the demographic make-up of park visitors, as well as how they spent their time in the park and the area. The survey also addressed economic impacts to the region from park visitation. The local region was defined as Montezeuma and La Plata counties, which roughly coincides with the 50-miles radius from the park for which expenditures were reported.
Of the 676 questionnaires distributed to visitors, 477 were returned for a 70.5% response rate. Some results noted in the report summaries concluded that:
- 74% were first time visitors, and 82% of visitor groups were family groups.
- 19% of the visitors were residents of countries outside the United States. France, Germany, Switzerland and the Netherlands accounted for the highest number of international visitors, but there were 23 countries represented during the survey period.
- 22% of the visitor groups felt that there were services that need to be provided in languages other than English.
- 81% of visitor groups said Mesa Verde National Park as one of the several destinations they would visit on this trip, and 56% said visiting Mesa Verde was the primary reason for their trip to this area.
- Total spending in 2012 in the park and within 50 miles of the park was estimated at $47.1 million. The greatest proportions of expenditures were for overnight accommodations, restaurants and bars.
- Overnight visitors staying in commercial lodging outside the park but within 50 miles of the park accounted for 73% of total spending.
To download or read the reports, visit www.nps.gov/meve/parkmgmt/index.htm.