Additional Drivers behind the TSP
1. Local Economic Impact:
In addition to trail maintenance and repair, the goal is to partner with surrounding communities and initiate the discussion on the economic impact of outdoor recreation in our region. Not just the economic impact we have witnessed and realized, but how we can improve to capture some of these visitors and in turn, benefit our local small businesses. The TSP is working to help our small communities positively capitalize on the large influx of visitors to our region, while working to plan and effectively manage the growth in visitation.
A significant number of visitors are traveling from Boise, Portland, and Bend, so it becomes imperative to encourage these visitors to spend dollars locally. This is a significant priority for the TSP and the one of the main drivers behind it. We have initiated discussions with surrounding Baker County communities about the push for local spending and have worked to brand this so it becomes recognized county wide. Our vision is to continue this branding to help boost visitor spending over the next year and beyond.
2. Way of Life and Recreating Responsibly:
One of the main reasons we all live here is outdoor recreation. Whether its biking, hiking, fishing, hunting, or something else, we all recreate outside. With the influx of visitors we witnessed during the summer of 2020, managing the growth will be critical to our experience and our way of life.
We have witnessed other communities being overrun with visitors from outside of the area. Visitors that are not respecting local values, not respecting proper trail etiquette, and not respecting local’s way of life. One of the main goal’s behind the TSP is to effectively manage this influx of visitors so it has a positive impact on our community, and not a detriment to our community.
The TSP will actively work with all community partners to inform and educate visitors from outside of our community to respect and appreciate Northeastern Oregon.
Not just safety of those recreating in our region but also the safety of our community and first responders. Cell service is extremely limited, wayfinding is currently less than ideal, and EMS response times are long for the majority of these locations.
More visitors to the area had the Baker County Search and Rescue stretched incredibly thin this past summer. This will continue as more and more new visitors to the area continue to come. If we are able to establish clear and consistent messaging and signage including cell phone service locations as well as overall wayfinding, it will only help.