Date of Award:

1977

Document Type:

Thesis

Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)

Department:

Sociology, Social Work, and Anthropology

Advisor/Chair:

Gary E. Madsen

Abstract

Snowmobiling is one of the major outdoor winter sports in Cache County, Utah. Despite its popularity, it has run into several problems, among which the most noticeable is its conflict with other winter recreationists, namely, cross-country skiers and snowshoers. In order to resolve this conflict, one must first understand more about each group involved. As such, the purpose of this research was to obtain information on the snowmobiler in Cache County, Utah. Specifically, the objectives of the study were: (1) to identify the attitudes of the snowmobiler toward leisure and the environment; (2) to identify and compare occupations, SES, and social characteristics with studies in other regions; (3) to identify and compare aspects such as when, where, and why they go snowmobiling and the areas preferred by them with studies in other regions; and (4) to identify their other leisure-time activities. To collect the data, the names of the Cache County snowmobilers were obtained from tax assessment receipts at the Cache County Courthouse. From a total list of 501 names, a sample of 250 was selected by a simple random procedure. A questionnaire composed of Burdge's Leisure Orientation Scale, an environmental orientation scale, and usage, ownership, and demographic questions was sent to the sample population with a 59 percent usable return rate. The data was then analyzed by the following SPSS programs to meet the objective of the study: marginals, t-test, and chi square. Analysis of the data revealed the following major characteristics of the Cache County, Utah snowmobilers: (1) They are typically male, married with between three and four children per family, have a high school education or above, have a median income above the median income for Utah of $9,320.00, and hold either a blue- or white-collar occupation. (2) They hold a slight preservationist orientation toward the environment. (3) They have a moderately strong leisure orientation. (4) They snowmobile primarily on weekends with friends or family with the primary area of use being the Cache National Forest. (5) The main reason for buying or still owning a snowmobile was "snowmobiling for pleasure." Upon comparison with the findings of this research with studies conducted in other regions, the conclusion is reached that the Cache County, Utah snowmobilers are much like their counterparts in other regions of the country.

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