Trail Data Collectors
The Community Foundation of Teton Valley supported a 2017 Fall Competitive Grant of $3,710 to Teton Valley Trails & Pathways for the purchase of Trail Data Collectors.
Trail counting devices help TVTAP collect valuable data regarding trail and pathway usage. These counters will collect user data on groomed winter trails, paved pathway networks and on hiking, biking, and horse trails within and surrounding Teton Valley. Accurate user data is essential to making sound management decisions and understanding changes in behavior and the number of users over time. Our valley trails accommodate a variety of users, including training athletes, school programs, racing teams, recreationalists, dog walkers, families, cyclists, and the casual walker.
Collecting and analyzing trail user data on all trails and pathways throughout Teton Valley during all seasons allows TVTAP to make sound management decisions that support our community’s needs. Data collected is also shared with partners, including private landowners, other organizations and local government agencies who rely on this information to secure funding for related trail and pathway projects. User data can also be used to show how trail use might impact the local economy. TVTAP has a proven ability to collaborate with a variety of stakeholders to provide this valuable asset to the community.
For the past six years, TVTAP has been tracking usage on valley trails, but the equipment has become outdated and is no longer supported. The previous system allowed them to count trail users, but not categorize the users. Having the ability to accurately count and categorize pedestrian, bicycle, and horse use is essential to helping Teton Valley Trails and Pathways, local government agencies, and other partners make sound management decisions.
New trail counters will allow TVTAP to continue to prioritize trail maintenance on groomed winter trails and to prioritize maintenance projects on the many summer trails we have on public lands in Teton Valley. This data collection will provide a quantifiable manner to think about the return on investment Teton Valley’s trails and pathways provide and to assist with keeping pace with demand for these resources and managing their impacts.