Date of Award:

1998

Document Type:

Thesis

Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)

Department:

Health, Physical Education, and Recreation

Advisor/Chair:

Dennis A. Nelson

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of boat density on boaters' satisfaction at Hyrum Lake State Park, Utah. The study evaluated relationships between boaters' satisfaction with their Hyrum Lake experience and density of boats at different locations on the lake and among participants in different boating activities.

The participants in this study were boaters who used Hyrum Lake between May and September of 1996. An oral, onsite interview survey was randomly given to 282 boaters as they left the lake for the day. The surveys were conducted on high-density days (weekends) and low-density days (weekdays) , which were also randomly selected.

Correlation analysis and analysis of variance (ANOVA) were performed . The study found no significant relationships between density and satisfaction associated with either lake location or activity. Satisfaction did not differ between activities; however, participants in two activities (fishing and water skiing) did report higher satisfaction while using the boat ramp than for other locations on the lake.

When a Welch t' test was performed comparing boating density ≤ 44 with boating density ≥ 45 boats, even though there was no statistically significant difference, a suggested trend did appear . The results indicate a slightly higher satisfaction rating among water skiers when density was 44 or fewer boats. Conversely, personal watercraft (PWC) users indicated that their satisfaction levels were higher when boating density was ≥ 45 boats. This would suggest that PWC users may be satisfied at boat densities much higher than other users could accept.

Although 74% of all the boaters surveyed wanted to set a limit (carrying capacity) on the number of boats allowed on the lake at one time, the carrying capacity will not be immediately implemented, because the data found no statistically significant difference in satisfaction levels with higher boat densities.

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