Six federal agencies—the Bureau of Land Management, Forest Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Park Service, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service—collaborate on the Interagency Visitor Use Management Council. Council collaboration is designed to increase awareness of and commitment to proactive, professional, and science-based visitor use management on federally-managed lands and waters. Providing a consistent approach to visitor use management better serves the public by creating seamless connections between lands and waters managed by different federal agencies.

What is Visitor Use Management?

Visitor use management is the proactive and adaptive process for managing characteristics of visitor use and the natural and managerial setting using a variety of strategies and tools to achieve and maintain desired resource conditions and visitor experiences.



The Interagency Visitor Use Management Council is excited to announce the release of the Visitor Capacity Guidebook: Managing the Amounts and Types of Visitor Use to Achieve Desired Conditions, Edition One. The Visitor Capacity Guidebook, in combination with the council’s Visitor Use Management Framework, provides managers with processes and tools to collaboratively develop long-term strategies to manage the amounts and types of visitor use to achieve desired conditions and improve access, connect visitors to key experiences, and protect resources.

Read the guidebook:

In addition to the framwork and guidebook, three contributed papers on the relationship between the amounts and types of visitor use and environmental, social, and wildlife impacts are now available.

Read the contributed papers:


Interagency Visitor Use Management Council members and technical advisers presented in a two-part webinar series co-hosted by IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas Tourism and Protected Areas Specialist Group and the council. The presentations focused on implementing the Visitor Use Management Framework into ongoing projects. In Part I, presenters provided an overview of the Visitor Use Management Framework as well as a case study using the Zion National Park Visitor Use Management Plan. In Part II, a brief overview of the Visitor Use Management Framework was provided followed by case studies using the Petroglyph National Monument Visitor Use Management Plan and USFS Pike National Forest Bear Creek Watershed Restoration Project.

Part I: https://youtu.be/uxpz8b-XvTk

Part II: https://youtu.be/LK2wvfCessQ

In the following podcast, Jennifer Reed (USFWS) from the Interagency Visitor Use Management Council Executive Committee explores the basic principles and strategies of visitor use management, and the simple, accessible tools you can use to effectively tackle projects involving visitor use of protected areas. Learn how you can use the Council’s tools to help you connect people with our healthy landscapes while insuring the landscapes continue to thrive now, next summer, and 50 years into the future.

Visitor Use Management Tools to Improve Visitor Experiences

Related Conferences

25th International Symposium on Society and Resource Management (ISSRM) — Sustainability and the Land Ethic in the Anthropocene: “A Thinking Community” Explores Critical Issues in Leopold’s Backyard.

Held on the campus of the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh. June 2–7 in Oshkosh, WI.

2019 Pathways: Human Dimensions of Wildlife Conference.

Hosted by Colorado State University. September 22–26 in Estes Park, CO.

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Information last updated
6/5/2019 10:30 am