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Dr. Jeffrey Marion

Adjunct Professor
  • B.A., Wittenberg University (1979); M.S., University of Minnesota (1982); Ph.D., University of Minnesota (1984))

Dr. Jeffrey Marion

Dr. Jeffrey Marion
304F Cheatham Hall
310 W. Campus Dr.
Blacksburg, VA 24061

Academic Interests - Recreation ecology:  research and monitoring to evaluate environmental impacts resulting from recreational activity in protected natural areas.  Research to: 1) identify, measure, and manage recreation resource impacts, 2) model and understand the influence of use-related, environmental, and managerial factors, 3) evaluate the efficacy of educational, site management and, regulatory actions designed to avoid or minimize recreation impacts, and 4) support and improve carrying capacity planning and decision-making.

Jeff's American Wilderness Anniversary

Government Website

  • FREC 5984 - Special Study (Recreation Ecology)
  • FREC 3544, 3564, & 5461 (Guest Lectures)
  • Campsite Monitoring within the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, (2016-2020).  Research to develop and apply campsite and recreation site monitoring protocols in wilderness, backcountry, and frontcountry settings. Consulting on camping management strategies and practices. Collaborative research with Pennsylvania State University and Applied Trails Research.
  • Sustainable Camping Management on the Pacific Crest Trail (U.S. Forest Service & Bureau of Land Management, 2017-2018).  Campsite conditions will be investigated within zones of high use to evaluate camping impact problems and sustainable “Best Management Practices.”
  • Wilderness Campsite Conditions: Changes Over 32 Years in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (U.S. Geological Survey and U.S. Forest Service, 2014-2017).  Approximately 100 campsites in the Boundary Waters, originally assessed in my 1982 PhD research will be reassessed in 2014 to examine long-term changes and evaluate campsite sustainability.
  • Evaluating the Sustainability of the Appalachian Scenic and Recreational Trail for Hiking and Camping (National Park Service, 2014-18).  Trail and campsite conditions will be investigated and analyzed with respect to sustainability, with guidance developed to improve the design and management of the Appalachian Trail and the location and development of overnight camping facilities.
  • Managing the Resource Impacts of Large Special Events (National Park Service, 2013-15).  The resource impacts of large special events like competitive races and cross-country orienteering events will be investigated. Best Management Practices will be developed to aid managers in avoiding or minimizing impacts.
  • Trail Monitoring Protocol Development for Denali National Park (National Park Service, 2006-2009) and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (2009-2013). Protocols for monitoring the lineal extent and condition of informal backcountry trails were developed and
    applied.
  • Evaluating and monitoring the effects of recreational visitation on cliffs and rock outcrops, Great Falls Park, George Washington Memorial Parkway (National Park Service, 2006-2011).  Developed indicators and monitoring protocols to assess the effects of hiking and climbing on cliff-associated natural resources, particularly rare plants.
  • Marion, J.L., & E.J. Wilkins. (In Press). Trail Sustainability Broadly Defined. Authored chapter in World Trails Report, a World Trails Network book.
  • Dolman, Megan R., & Jeffrey L. Marion. (In Press). Invasive Plant Hitchhikers: Appalachian Trail thru-hiker knowledge and attitudes of invasive plants and Leave No Trace practices. Journal of Outdoor Recreation and Tourism.
  • Park, Logan O., Jeffrey L. Marion, & Jeremy Wimpey. (In Press). Efficacy of Combining Education and Site Management in Reducing Off-Trail Travel in a Fragile Biotic Community, Acadia National Park. Journal of Interpretation Research.
  • Wimpey, Jeremy, Jeffrey L. Marion, Johanna Arredondo, Fletcher Meadema. 2022. Research to Monitor Backcountry Campsite Conditions at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. Final Research Report. National Park Service, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Page, AZ.
  • Marion, J.L., Wimpey, J., Arredondo, J., and Meadema, F. 2022. Improving the Sustainability of Camping Management on the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail. Final Report to the USDA Forest Service, Pacific SW Region, Vallejo, CA and the Pacific Crest Trail Association, Sacramento, CA.
  • Saaty, M., J.V. Patel, N. Abdelgawad, D.S. McCrickard, J. Marion, S. Misra, & K. Wernstedt. 2022. Studying Sustainable Practices of Appalachian Trail Community based on Reddit Topic Modelling Analysis. Compass, https://doi.org/10.1145/3530190.3534848.
  • Arredondo, Johanna, Jeffrey L. Marion, Jeremy Wimpey, & Fletcher Meadema. 2021. Modeling areal measures of campsite impacts on the Appalachian National Scenic Trail to enhance ecological sustainability. Journal of Environmental Management  279. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2020.111693.
  • Meadema, Fletcher, Jeffrey L. Marion, Johanna Arredondo & Jeremy Wimpey.  (2020). The Influence of Layout on Appalachian Trail Soil Loss, Widening, and Muddiness: Implications for Sustainable Trail Design and Management. Journal of Environmental Management 257. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2019.109986.
  • Settina, Nita, Jeffrey L. Marion, & Forrest Schwartz. 2020. Leave No Trace Communication: Effectiveness Based on Assessments of Resource Conditions. Journal of Interpretation Research 25(1): 5-25. https://doi.org/10.1177/1092587220963523.
  • Eagleston, Holly, and Jeffrey L. Marion.  2020. Application of airborne LiDAR and GIS in modeling trail erosion along the Appalachian Trail in New Hampshire, USA. Landscape & Urban Planning 198. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.landurbplan.2020.103765.
  • Marion, J.L., Wimpey, J., Arredondo, J., and Meadema, F. 2020. Improving the Sustainability of the Appalachian Trail: Trail and Recreation Site Conditions and Management. Final Report to the DOI National Park Service, Appalachian Trail Park Office and the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, Harpers Ferry, WV. 137 p.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L., Jeremy Wimpey, Johanna Arredondo, and Fletcher Meadema. 2020. Sustainable Camping “Best Management Practices.” Final Report to the DOI National Park Service, Appalachian Trail Park Office and the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, Harpers Ferry, WV. 59 p.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L. 2019. Recreational Impacts to Wildlife:  Managing Visitors and Resources to Protect Wildlife.  Interagency Visitor Use Management Council Contributing Paper, Edition One. https://visitorusemanagement.nps.gov/Content/documents/Contributing%20Paper_Impacts%20to%20Wildlife_Visitor%20Capacity_Edition%201.pdf.
  • Peterson, Brian A., Matthew T.J. Brownlee, & Jeffrey L. Marion. 2018. Mapping the relationships between trail conditions and experiential elements of long-distance hiking.  Landscape and Urban Planning 180: 60-75.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L., Jeremy Wimpey, & Ben Lawhon. 2018. Conflicting Messages about Camping near Waterbodies in Wilderness: A Review of the Scientific Basis and Need for Flexibility. International Journal of Wilderness 24(2): 68-81.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L., Johanna Arredondo, Jeremy Wimpey, & Fletcher Meadema. 2018. Applying Recreation Ecology Science to Sustainably Manage Camping Impacts: A Classification of Camping Management Strategies. International Journal of Wilderness 24(2): 84-100.
  • Blenderman, Amelia, B. Derrick Taff, Jeremy Wimpey, Jeffrey Marion, & Forrest Schwartz. 2018. Understanding and mitigating wilderness therapy impacts: The Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument Case Study. International Journal of Wilderness 24(2): 18-29.
  • Eagleston, Holly, and Jeffrey L. Marion.  2018. “Naturalness” in designated Wilderness: Long-term changes in non-native plant dynamics on campsites, Boundary Waters, Minnesota.  Forest Science 64(1): 50-56.
  • Hockett, Karen, Jeffrey L. Marion, & Yu-Fai Leung. 2017. The Efficacy of Combined Educational and Site Management Actions in Reducing Off-trail Hiking in an Urban-Proximate Protected Area. J. of Environmental Mgmt. 203: 17-28. 
  •  Marion, Jeffrey L., & Jeremy Wimpey. 2017. Assessing the influence of sustainable trail design and maintenance on soil loss. J. of Environmental Mgmt. 189: 46-57.
  •  Eagleston, Holly, and Jeffrey L. Marion. 2017. Sustainable campsite management in protected areas: A study of long-term ecological changes on campsites in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, Minnesota, USA. J. for Nature Conservation 37: 73-82.
  •  Marion, Jeffrey L., Johanna Arredondo, & Holly Eagleston. 2016. Large Special Use Events: Resource Impact Evaluation and Best Management Practices. USDI, National Park Service, Final Research Report for the C&O Canal National Historical Park. Virginia Tech, College of Natural Resources & nvironment,   Department of Forest Resources & Environmental Conservation, Blacksburg, VA 96 pp.
  •  Marion, Jeffrey L. 2016. A Review and synthesis of recreation ecology research supporting carrying capacity and visitor use management decision-making. J. of Forestry 114(3): 339-351.
  •  Marion, Jeffrey L., Yu-Fai Leung, Holly Eagleston, & Kaitlin Burroughs. 2016. A review and synthesis of recreation ecology research findings on visitor impacts to wilderness and protected natural areas. J. of Forestry 114(3): 352-362.
  •  Marion, Jeffrey.  2014. Leave No Trace in the Outdoors.  Stackpole Books.
  •  Browning, Matthew, Jeffrey L. Marion, & Timothy G. Gregoire. 2013. Sustainably connecting children with nature - An exploratory study of nature play area visitor impacts and their management. Landscape and Urban Planning 119: 104-112.
  •  Bromley, Maria, Marion, Jeffrey L., & Hall, Troy E. 2013. Training to Teach Leave No Trace: Efficacy of Master Educator Courses. Journal of Park & Recreation Administration 31(4): 62-78.   
  • Monz, Christopher, Jeffrey L. Marion, & Jennifer Reed. 2012. Informal Trail Monitoring in the Atigun Gorge Area of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Final Management Rpt., Utah State University, Logan, UT.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L., Jeremy F. Wimpey, & Logan O. Park. 2011. The science of trail surveys: Recreation ecology provides new tools for managing wilderness trails.  Park Science 28(3): 60-65.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L. and Jeremy Wimpey.  2011.  Informal Trail Monitoring Protocols: Denali National Park and Preserve. Final Research Report. U.S. Geological Survey, Distributed by the Virginia Tech College of Natural Resources, Blacksburg, VA.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L. and Yu-Fai Leung.  2011. Indicators and protocols for monitoring impacts of formal and informal trails in protected areas. Journal of Tourism & Leisure Studies 17(2):215-236.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L., Christopher Carr & Charles A. Davis. 2011.  Recreation impacts to cliff resources in the Potomac Gorge.  Final Research Rpt. U.S. Geological Survey, Distributed by the Virginia Tech College of Natural Resources, Blacksburg, VA.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L., Ben Lawhon, Wade Vagias, & Peter Newman. 2011. Revisiting “Beyond Leave No Trace.” Ethics, Place, and Environment 14(2): 231-237.
  • Wimpey, Jeremy & Jeffrey L. Marion. 2011. Formal and informal trail monitoring protocols and baseline conditions:  Great Falls Park and Potomac Gorge.  Final Research Rpt. U.S. Geological Survey, Distributed by the Virginia Tech College of Natural Resources & Environment, Blacksburg, VA.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L., Jeremy Wimpey & Logan Park. 2011. Informal and formal trail monitoring protocols and baseline conditions: Acadia National Park.  Final Research Rpt. U.S. Geological Survey, Distributed by the Virginia Tech College of Natural Resources & Environment, Blacksburg, VA. 120p.
  • Wimpey, Jeremy & Jeffrey L. Marion. 2011. A spatial exploration of informal trail networks within Great Falls Park, VA. Journal of Environmental Management 92:1012-1022.
  • Wimpey, Jeremy & Jeffrey L. Marion.  2010. The influence of use, environmental and managerial factors on the width of recreational trails.  Journal of Environmental Management 91: 2028-2037.
  • Monz, Christopher A., Jeffrey L. Marion, Kelly A. Goonan, Robert Manning, Jeremy Wimpey, Christopher Carr.  2010. Assessment and monitoring of recreation impacts and resource conditions on mountain summits: Examples from the Northern Forest, USA. Mountain Research & Development 30(4):332-343.
  • Cahill, Kerri, Jeffrey L. Marion and Stephen Lawson.  2009.  A comparative study of tradeoffs among trail attributes at Acadia National Park. pp. 256-266.  Book Chapter In: R.E. Manning (ed.), Parks and People: Managing Outdoor Recreation at Acadia National Park. Burlington, VT: University of Vermont Press.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L. and Chris Carr. 2009. Backcountry Recreation Site and Trail Conditions: Haleakalā National Park. Final Research Rpt. Virginia Tech College of Natural Resources, Forestry/Recreation Resources Management, Blacksburg, VA.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L., Jeremy Wimpey, and Logan O. Park. 2009. Monitoring and assessing trail conditions at Acadia National Park. Book Chapter In: R.E. Manning (ed.), pp. 185-195. Parks and People: Managing Outdoor Recreation at Acadia National Park. Burlington, VT: University of Vermont Press.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L. 2009. Indicators and Standards of Quality for Trail and Campsite Conditions at Isle au Haut. Book Chapter In: R.E. Manning (ed.), pp. 41-52. Parks and People: Managing Outdoor Recreation at Acadia National Park. Burlington, VT: University of Vermont Press.
  • Olive, Nathanial D. and Jeffrey L. Marion.  2009. The influence of use-related, environmental and managerial factors on soil loss from recreational trails. Journal of Environmental Management  90(3): 1483–1493.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L., Robert G. Dvorak and Robert E. Manning. 2008. Wildlife feeding in parks: Methods for monitoring the effectiveness of educational interventions and wildlife food attraction behaviors.  Human Dimensions of Wildlife 13: 429-442.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L. and Karen Hockett.  2008. Frontcountry recreation site and trail conditions: Haleakalä National Park.  USDI, U.S. Geological Survey, Final Research Rpt., Virginia Tech Field Station, Blacksburg, VA. 88p.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L. and Karen Hockett.  2008.  Trail and campsite monitoring protocols: Zion National Park.  USDI, U.S. Geological Survey, Final Research Rpt., Virginia Tech Field Station, Blacksburg, VA. 65p.
  • Park, Logan O., Robert E. Manning, Jeffrey L. Marion, Steven R. Lawson, Charles Jacobi.  2008.  Managing visitor impacts in parks: A multi-method study of the effectiveness of alternative management practices.  Journal of Parks and Recreation Administration 26(1): 97-121.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L. and Jeremy Wimpey.  2007.  Environmental Impacts of Mountain Biking: Science Review and Best Practices.  In: Managing Mountain Biking. Pete Webber, editor. International Mountain Biking Association, Boulder, CO pp. 94-111.
  • Cahill, Kerri, Jeffrey L. Marion and Stephen Lawson.  2007.  Enhancing the interpretation of stated choice tradeoff analysis through the application of a verbal protocol assessment. Journal of Leisure Research 39(2):201-221.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L. and Scott E. Reid.  2007.  Minimising visitor impacts to protected areas: The efficacy of low impact education programmes.  Journal of Sustainable Tourism 15(1): 5-27.
  • Wood, Kerry, Steve Lawson, and Jeffrey L. Marion. 2006. Assessing recreation impacts to cliffs in Shenandoah National Park:  Integrating visitor observation with trail and recreation site measurements. J. of Park & Recreation Administration 24(4): 86-110.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L., Yu-Fai Leung, and Sanjay Nepal. 2006. Monitoring trail conditions: new methodological considerations. George Wright Forum 23(2): 36-49.
  • Manning, Robert, Charlie Jacoby, and Jeffrey L. Marion.  2006.  Acadia National Park visitor use and impact monitoring programs for carrying capacity decision making George Wright Forum  23(2): 59-72.
  • Daniels, Melissa L. and Jeffrey L. Marion.  2006.  Communicating Leave No Trace Ethics and Practices:  Efficacy of two-day Trainer Courses.  J. of Park & Recreation Administration 23(4):1-19.
  • Daniels, Melissa L. and Jeffrey L. Marion.  2006.  Visitor evaluations of management actions at a highly impacted Appalachian Trail camping area.  Environmental Management 38(6):1006–1019.   
  • Reid, Scott E. and Jeffrey L. Marion.  2005.  A comparison of campfire impacts and policies in seven protected areas.  Environmental Management 36(1): 48-58.
  • Leung, Yu-Fai and Jeffrey L. Marion. 2004. Managing impacts of campsites.  In: Buckley, Ralf (ed.), Environmental Impact of Tourism, Cambridge, MA: CABI Publishing. pp. 245-258.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L. and Yu-Fai Leung.  2004.  Environmentally sustainable trail
    management.  In: Buckley, Ralf (ed.), Environmental Impact of Tourism, Cambridge, MA: CABI Publishing. pp. 229-244. (peer-reviewed)
  • Newsome, David E., David N. Cole and Jeffrey L. Marion.  2004.  Environmental impacts associated with recreational horse riding. In: Buckley, Ralf (ed.), Environmental Impact of Tourism, Cambridge, MA: CABI Publishing. pp. 61-82.
  • Reid, Scott E. and Jeffrey L. Marion.  2004.  Effectiveness of a confinement strategy for reducing campsite impacts in Shenandoah National Park.  Environmental Conservation 31(4): 274-282.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L.  2003.  Camping impact management on the Appalachian National Scenic Trail.  Report published by the Appalachian Trail Conference, Harper’s Ferry, WV. 109 pp.
  • Farrell, Tracy A. and Jeffrey L. Marion.  2002. The Protected Areas Visitor Impact Management (PAVIM) framework: A simplified process for making management decisions.  Journal of Sustainable Tourism 10(1): 31-51.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L. and Tracy Farrell.  2002. Management Practices that Concentrate Visitor Activities:  Camping Impact Management at Isle Royale National Park, USA. Journal of Environmental Management 66(2): 201-212.
  • Farrell, Tracy A. and Jeffrey L. Marion.  2002.  Trail impacts and trail impact
    management related to ecotourism visitation at Torres del Paine National Park, Chile. Leisure/Loisir 26(1/2):31-59.
  • Farrell, Tracy A. and Jeffrey L. Marion.  2001.  Identifying and assessing ecotourism visitor impacts at selected protected areas in Costa Rica and Belize.  Environmental Conservation 28(3): 215-225.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L. and Scott Reid.   2001.  Development of the United States Leave No Trace programme:  A historical perspective.  In: Usher, M.B. (ed.), Enjoyment and Understanding of the Natural Heritage. Scottish Natural Heritage, Edinburgh: The Stationery Office Ltd., Scotland.  pp.81-92.
  • Marion, Jeffrey L. and Yu-Fai Leung.  2001.  Trail resource impacts and an
    examination of alternative assessment techniques.   Journal of Park and Recreation Administration 19(3):17-37.
  • Leung, Yu-Fai, Jeffrey L. Marion, and Tracy A. Farrell.  2001. The role of recreation ecology in sustainable tourism and ecotourism. In: McCool, S. F. and Moisey, N. (eds), Tourism, Recreation and Sustainability: Linking Culture and Environment. Oxon, UK: CABI Publishing. pp. 21-39.
  • Leung, Yu-Fai and Jeffrey L. Marion.  2000.  Recreation impacts and management in wilderness:  A state-of-knowledge review.  In: Cole, D.N. and others  (eds.), Proceedings: Wilderness Science in a Time of Change; Vol 5: Wilderness ecosystems, threats, and management,  pp. 23-48; May 23-27, 1999, Missoula, MT.  Proceedings RMRS-P-15-Vol-5. Ogden, UT: USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. (http://www.wilderness.net/pubs/science1999/volume5.htm)
  • Associate Editor:  Journal of Environmental Management, International Journal of Wilderness
  • Board of Directors: American Hiking Society, Leave No Trace (past member), Appalachian Trail Conservancy (Stewardship Council), International Centre for Ecotourism Research, Queensland, Australia (Advisory Board)
  • Boy Scouts of America:  William T. Hornaday Natural Resource Conservation Gold Badge Award (2006), Gold Medal Award (2007)
  • National Park Service Special Achievement Awards, Mid-Atlantic Region (1988-93)
  • National Park Service Special Act Award, Shenandoah NP (1994), NPS Wilderness Management Award, Great Smoky Mountains NP (1995)
  • U.S. Forest Service, Forest Supervisor’s Honor Award, Hoosier National Forest (2006)