Date of Award

2011

Document Type

Undergraduate Thesis

Department

Environmental Program

Keywords

Vermont, swimming holes, place attachment

Abstract

Without a doubt, swimming holes are one of Vermont's most valued natural resources. These spots provide a place for a diverse population to experience invigorating recreation and spiritual relaxation away from urban environments and the hustle and stress of everyday life. Unfortunately, overuse, abuse, and degradation have caused a plethora of issues at these locations over the years. The research explained in this thesis identifies the different "user groups” who make use of swimming holes in Vermont, and explores the types of place-based relationships that the individuals in these groups ascribe to water environments. Through interview, observation, and analysis, this thesis extrapolates behavioral themes, place attachment dimensions, and common problems that are present in three specific Vermont swimming holes. From this gathered information, policy and management options that offer a range of solutions to the issues at hand are described.

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