As people across the country grew restless at home and sought ways to avoid getting sick, Lander, Wyoming saw an influx of visitors in early 2020. The region’s scenic beauty and outdoor activities attracted many outdoor enthusiasts, who found solace in the less populated areas.
However, this surge in outdoor recreation was not limited to Lander. Across the United States, the outdoor recreation sector has seen significant growth since the start of the pandemic. New data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis indicates that outdoor recreation contributed over $1 trillion in economic output in 2022. This sector has become a significant force in the economy, comprising 2.2% of the national GDP.
Despite this growth and potential for local economies, many of them rely on public lands maintained by federal workers. Concerns have been raised about the possibility of a government shutdown affecting these areas, which could have a significant impact on mountain towns such as Lander.
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