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Outdoor recreation contributed over $1 trillion to U.S. economic output last year

Nov 20, 2023
Newly released data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis also found the industry made outsized contributions to the economies of states like Wyoming, Alaska, Florida and Vermont.
The Bureau of Economic Analysis found that outdoor recreation now now makes up 2.2% of the U.S. GDP.
George Frey/Getty Images

How an urban hiker in Kansas City turned her side hustle full-time

Oct 9, 2023
"After having my urban hikes for about a year, I realized that if I wanted my business to grow, that I would need to focus full time on it, and that was a scary leap," said Lisa Peña, owner of Urban Hikes Kansas City.
Urban Hikes Kansas City owner Lisa Peña shows off a mural by artist Fem_nine on a hike.
Courtesy Lisa Peña, mural by artist Fem_nine

Cyclists and hikers bring life back to an old gold mining town in Wyoming

Sep 18, 2023
A growing number of adventurers are traveling the Continental Divide each summer, bringing a much-needed boost to one community.
Cyclists sit at the wooden bar in the Atlantic City Mercantile. It is an old saloon that was originally built for gold miners, but now sees mostly hikers and cyclists.
Caitlin Tan/Wyoming Public Media

Over the holidays, retailers faced inventory woes and harsh winter weather

Jan 5, 2023
Three retailers from across the country share how they did over the holiday shopping season.
"We definitely saw more late shoppers this year than in previous years, especially the week before Christmas," said Eric Champlin, co-owner of Trailful Outdoor Company in Hiawassee, Georgia.
Mario Tama/Getty Images

This Colorado brewery subsidized housing to attract workers

Dec 26, 2022
In Ouray, Colorado, high-priced housing is a labor force issue.
During the pandemic, Erin Eddy, owner of the Ouray Brewery in Southwestern Colorado began subsidizing housing for employees to help alleviate the staffing shortage. Above, the Ouray Brewery in October of 2021.
Courtesy Erin Eddy

For hiking outfitter, this holiday season feels like a path untrodden

Dec 7, 2022
From dealing with surplus inventory to accommodating changing consumer habits, this Georgia retailer is trying to suss out the future.
Eric Champlin (left) and husband Rob Sollie at their shop in Hiawassee, Georgia. "Consumer buying patterns are definitely shifting," Champlin says.
Courtesy Champlin

British walkers demand wider right to roam

Sep 28, 2022
A United Kingdom group is calling for greater access to the countryside and is organizing mass trespasses to get it.
The majority of the England's countryside is off limits to the public, but an assortment of nature lovers is advocating for expanded public access to the countryside.
Stephen Beard/Marketplace

For public good, not for profit.

Wyoming hopes recreational trail improvements will spur tourism

Sep 20, 2022
Updating old cattle trails, logging roads and wildlife migration trails could provide a crucial boost to local economies, some say.
Ryan Grove of Sublette Trails Association fixes an old trail in the Wind River Range in northwest Wyoming.
Caitlin Tan/Wyoming Public Media

Why did the outdoor economy suffer in 2020 when more of us were outside?

Nov 11, 2021
Lockdowns, public lands closures, supply chain disruptions and travel restrictions took a toll. But many outdoor retailers still had a great year.
More Americans got out and about biking, fishing and hiking amid COVID-19 in 2020. Above, a bike shop owner repairs a tire in Brooklyn.
Michael M. Santiago via Getty Images

When Mt. Everest's base camp is enough

Jun 16, 2017
Climbing Mt. Everest may seem like something you’d never do — and you probably won’t. But what about getting to Everest base camp? That seems more accessible, and just as exciting and Instagram-worthy. All you have to do is hike along narrow paths and up steep inclines, withstand freezing temperatures and acclimate to high altitudes […]