What is Visitor Use Management?

PCTA volunteers learn trail building strategies at the North Cascades Trail Skills College in Washington.

There are many VUM strategies that can be employed to protect the PCT—both the lands around the trail as well as the trail experience for hikers and equestrians. Some strategies include:

  • increased trail education
  • research to understand use patterns and impacts
  • restoration work to address physical impacts along the trail such as campsite restoration
  • a permit system that regulates numbers and minimizes impacts associated with large numbers of people in the same place at the same time

The PCTA takes the most minimal approaches possible to protect the trail, so your experience with the PCT does not become too burdened with rules and regulations which confine your experience.

Outdoor recreation is fundamental to American culture. Every year, more and more people travel to public lands. To continue to benefit from the opportunities created by expanding recreational use, this nationwide trend requires that all of us—visitors, managers, and citizens—adopt more effective ways to manage visitor access and use that ensure these special places, and the benefits they generate, persist for this and future generations. The National Interagency VUM Council

Currently, we focus our efforts—along with our agency partners—in specific areas along the trail that are impacted by tremendous use. Many of these impacts are the collective result of a variety of users: weekend backpackers, week long backpackers, section hikers and thru-hikers.

To learn more about Visitor Use Management on the PCT, follow the links below.

Back to Visitor Use Management Home

↑ Back to top