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Best Towns 2018

The Economic Impact of Outdoor Adventure

Adventure assets have made millions in these five towns

Adventure is an economic asset - and these towns know it. (Photo: Daniel Holtz/Tandem)
Adventure is an economic asset - and these towns know it.

As the country begins to reopen, we'll keep publishing news to help you navigate the state of travel today (like whether travel insurance covers the coronavirus), as well as stories about places for you to put on your bucket list once it's safe to start going more far-flung.

What kind of return on investment can a town expect from its outdoor investments? We crunched the numbers to find out.

Boone, North Carolina

Boone, North Carolina
Boone, North Carolina (Photo: Creative Commons)

Asset: Pump track
Name: Rocky Knob Mountain Bike Park
Economic impact: $2.7 million in 2013

Ouray, Colorado

Ouray, Colorado
Ouray, Colorado (Photo: Creative Commons)

Asset: Man-made ice-climbing routes
Name: Ouray Ice Park
Economic impact: $3 million in the 2016–17 season

Red River Gorge, Kentucky

Red River Gorge, Kentucky
Red River Gorge, Kentucky (Photo: Creative Commons)

Asset: Natural sandstone cliffs
Name: Daniel Boone National Forest
Economic impact: $3.8 million in 2015

Oklahoma City

Oklahoma City
Oklahoma City (Photo: Creative Commons)

Asset: Whitewater park and adventure complex
Name: Riversport Rapids
Economic impact: $5.5 million on average per year

Leadville, Colorado

Leadville, Colorado
Leadville, Colorado (Photo: Flickr)

Asset: Mountain-bike race and ultramarathon
Name: Leadville Race Series
Economic impact: $15 million in 2012

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From Outside Magazine, August 2018
Filed To: ClimbingBest Towns
Lead Photo: Daniel Holtz/Tandem
Habits of Highly Successful Cities