Adventure Tourism Could Bring Millions Of Dollars To Eastern Kentucky

By: Dara Rees Email
By: Dara Rees Email

It's an industry that could bring millions of dollars to the state.

Lieutenant Governor-Elect Daniel Mongiardo made a major announcement concerning adventure tourism in eastern Kentucky.

Two families signed over more than 10,000 acres of land for a new ATV trail that will connect five eastern Kentucky counties.

Future plans include additional trails for horse-back riding, dirt bikes, and walkers.

There's even talk about white water rafting near Buckhorn Lake.

Lieutenant Governor elect Daniel Mongiardo says he hopes to make Kentucky's ATV trails the largest in the country..

Many are excited about the latest plans for adventure tourism in eastern Kentucky.

“I think adventure tourism is an untapped resource for us here in the mountains of eastern Kentucky, a destination for tourists, not just from around the state, but from around the country and around the world,” Mongiardo said.

The Abner and Gay families signed over land in Clay, Owsley, Perry, Breathitt, and Leslie Counties for a new trail for horses and off road vehicles.

With more than 70,000 visitors last year ATV trails in Harlan County are already profiting.

“On average, if they stayed in Harlan County overnight, they spent 187 dollars per person per day, which is really helping the economy of Harlan, Kentucky,” Mongiardo said.

“Harlan County has shown that this will work, they have proven it. They've made millions of dollars off it already, but the people in the end will end up with something they've never had before,” Perry County Judge Executive Denny Ray Noble said.

Mongiardo hopes to connect the eastern Kentucky trails with some in the western part of the state.. making more than two-thousand miles available to ATV’s, horseback riding, and hiking.

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