Award Date

Spring 2003

Degree Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Environmental Science

Advisor 1

Sarah Sutherland Outdoor Recreation Planner, Bureau of Land Management

Advisor 2

Dr. Helen Neill Chair and Associate Professor, Environmental Studies Program

Advisor 3

Dr. Krystyna Stave Associate Professor, Environmental Studies Program

Number of Pages



The purpose of this study was to gather baseline data and user preferences from a mountain bike user’s perspective about the current condition of the multiple use trails in Cottonwood Valley. Cottonwood Valley is an area located at the southern tip of the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area. Multiple use includes hiking, biking and horseback riding and does not include motorized vehicles. The area was set aside for conservation by an act of Congress because of the inherent value that it represents.

Because the public is allowed to access and use the trails in the area, there has been degradation to the land. Educating this user group on rules and etiquette may be beneficial for future use in the area. The impact to the trail and surrounding areas will need to be addressed by the users to find out if these impacts are negative or positive as viewed by the users. A Visitor Employed Photography survey was used to capture what trail attributes effects cyclists in a negative or positive way. These results were fed into the second part of the study.

Phase two gathered specific criteria and places where attributes arose. Re-occurring attributes of the trail that were attained during this study were categorized and used to establish preferences and effects of impacts to users of the trail system. From these a deeper investigation into what the problem aspects are and why they occur were addressed. The positive aspects were also analyzed and categorized to determine if they can be replicated in future trails. This gives some insight into what mountain bikers’ preferences are on established trails. This information will help establish a baseline of criteria to use if future studies are done on trail conditions and user groups.


Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area (Nev.); Cottonwood Valley (Nev.); Nevada; Outdoor recreation environmental aspects; Nature trails; Mountain bikes


Environmental Health and Protection | Environmental Sciences | Natural Resources and Conservation | Natural Resources Management and Policy

File Format


Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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