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k-2
08-25-2004, 01:31 PM
Does anyone know where the entrance to a hiking trail off of 248 that connects with the Paul Henning Trails would be located? I have seen information about it in a brochure, but can't find the brochure. Also, if I remember, I couldn't figure out the entrance anyway.

Barefoot Eddie
08-26-2004, 04:47 PM
The only place I believe connects to Henning is around Byrd Road, almost like an old dirt road rather than a trail. Other than that I don't believe there's another trail connecting the two. The City of Branson is developing an extensive trail system which will be built over the next few years, and the first phase will run from downtown out to Henning. The plan is to eventually have about 90 miles of hiking/biking trails within the city.

k-2
08-27-2004, 06:31 PM
Thanks for the reply. Is Byrd Road around the 248 area? That is good news about the hiking trails and the expansion.

SilverMallard
08-28-2004, 08:21 AM
As I understand it from talking to local business owners who are either in the bike/hike biz or on its periphery, the city and chamber have really been dragging their feet on these trail projects...even though they're advertising them. It keeps getting put on the back burner due to "other needs."

With the growth of ecotourism and the changing vacation lifestyles of the post-WW2 generations (BB's, GenX, etc.), ecotourism infrastructure SHOULD be a relatively high priority for civic leaders in the area. Especially among the 30-something and younger crowds, they go on vacations to places that feature OUTDOOR RECREATION options first and foremost. They will choose areas that offer shopping, entertainment, and nightlife as the other options available to them in conjunction with outdoors activities over areas with only outdooor rec stuff. But they are looking for quality outdoors recreation (hiking, biking, camping, boating, personal watercraft, ATV, offroading, fishing, outdoor photography, skiing, scuba diving, climbing, canoeing, kayaking, and even hunting) first and foremost. Trends among Baby Boomers and even moreso among GenX'ers suggest that even as these generations age, their vacation habits do not change much. We used to think they would shift away from outdoor rec as they aged. But with many GenX'ers now approaching their 40s, this is not happening. I've seen no science to back me up on this next point, but I hypothesize that the reason for the absence of changing preferences is due in no small part to the fact that we now have so many entertainment and shopping options pumped right into our homes via TV and the Internet that there just isn't much mandate to go on vacation for the purpose of being entertained. Folks go on vacation to interract with nature in ways they cannot in the cities/suburbs and to expose their own children to the great outdoors.

Hopefully, as demand for outdoor recreation options continues to increase, the community leadership will respond positively and re-prioritize items like trails and work with entrepreneurs to develop other outdoor rec businesses such as scuba diving, rock climbing, canoeing/kayaking, in our area. The big "problem" with trails and such is that you have a hard time setting up a gate, selling tickets, and charging high admissions fees. Thus, it is harder to track performance and demand. And it's harder to see the $$$ generated. Compared to a SDC or CC...or a theater...it's harder to get the chamber or the taxing entities excited about. But there is a community of outdoor rec business owners banging their heads against the proverbial brick wall and hoping someone will start listening.