A recent U.S forest service study shows the economic impact visitors to our nation's forests have on the economies of neighboring communities.

Over 170 million visitors annually spending over $14.5  billion dollars a year on services within a 50 mile radius of national forests.

But how does that translate into job creation and retention?

Jim Bidwell for the National Forest Service explains, "that 14.5 billion that's spread in communities within 50 miles of the forest translates to 223 thousand jobs per year and those are all local folks working either directly on the forest-it could be an outfitter guiding-or working in a retail establishment."

Bidwell calls these real jobs as they are not jobs that are exported or sent overseas. Bidwell says even when the economy goes down people look to recreation as a very inexpensive form of entertainment and escape.