BWCAW Reservations Down in 2010

Reservations for overnight stays in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness this summer were down as of late May, adding more credence to concerns about a fall-off in visitation to the nation’s most-visited wilderness area.

The Duluth News Tribune’s Sam Cook, advancing a story originally broken by Wilderness News, examines some of the factors behind the decline in BWCAW usage HERE.

You can read the Wilderness News’ story on the matter, HERE, in the latest issue of the newsletter.

According to the News Tribune, as of May 25 the number of reservations for overnight visits to the BWCAW was off more than 8% — down from 20,278 reservations at the same point in 2009 to just 18,602 this year.

While the decline may reflect visitors delaying making their reservations to the BWCAW rather than an actual decline in visitation, the statistics come in a climate of reduced overnight BWCAW visitation in recent years and a more precipitous decline in camping rates at Quetico Provincial Park in Ontario.

Boundary Waters outfitters interviewed for the story report seeing mixed results in recent years, but are concerned about an aging camper demographic and a dearth of youth groups and extended family trips in the BWCAW.

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