Trail Tracks e-Newsletter
June 2010

Trail Tracks is the monthly e-Newsletter from American Trails. Check the topics below for links to the world's most comprehensive online source for planning, designing, building, funding, managing, enhancing, and supporting trails and greenways.

As summer approaches trail managers are in full gear to ensure the joy and safety of millions of Americans who are out riding, paddling, and hiking. It’s also the time for volunteers nationwide to take up pulaskis, shovels, and saws to help maintain our network of trails.  On June 5 over a thousand events were celebrated all around the country on American Hiking Society’s annual “National Trails Day,” and we continue to salute these great volunteers who make every day a “happy trails” day!

In This Issue

20th AMERICAN TRAILS NATIONAL SYMPOSIUM: November 14-17, 2010 ~ Chattanooga, TN

ALERTS

NEWS

FEATURES

TRAINING & EDUCATION

NEW RESOURCES

JOIN THE AMERICAN TRAILS NETWORK

QUICK LINKS

20th AMERICAN TRAILS NATIONAL SYMPOSIUM: November 14-17, 2010 ~ Chattanooga, TN

Register online now for the American Trails National Symposium!

Recognizing that budgets are tight, the American Trails Board has once again decided to keep the registration rates the same as the last two Symposiums (and lower in some categories), and will not be raising the rates this year. Remember, American Trails members receive a substantial discount on the registration package. Not an American Trails member yet? Now is the perfect time to join! Join now and view the Registration page for rates…

June 30 is the deadline for nominations for National Trails Awards

The National Trails Awards celebrate the exemplary people across the landscape of America who are working to create a national system of trails to meet the recreation, health, and travel needs of all Americans. American Trails will honor outstanding efforts made by agencies, trail professionals, the private sector, corporations, media, and others at the American Trails National Symposium. The deadline for nominations is June 30, 2010. See all the award categories and download the nomination form...

Developer Recognition Award focuses on community trail systems

In addition to the National Trails Awards, American Trails also recognizes quality, well-designed multi-use trail systems that are integrated into private developments to encourage active lifestyles, reduce reliance on automobiles, connect the development to other public and private pathways and destinations, and preserve and promote natural areas. Download the 2010 Developer Recognition Award criteria and application (pdf 100 kb)andview photos and details of the 2008 Developer Recognition Award winners…

Exhibitors: save 10% on your contract until July 31

Exhibitors can save 10% if they send in their contracts by July 31, 2010. Benefits of coming in early as an exhibitor include choosing a booth location in the order your contract is received (some exceptions may apply) and being linked immediately to our sponsors’ web page. See extensive details of exhibitor levels and benefits…

Sponsorship opportunities for the American Trails National Symposium

Being a sponsor of the 20th American Trails National Symposium is your best opportunity to network with the nationwide trails community and maximize your visibility and message. Sponsorship opportunities are available for an event or Symposium item. We expect to sell out, so get in early for the best recognition opportunities! Please support our Symposium Sponsors and learn about sponsorship opportunities...

Chattanooga hotel and travel options are available… make plans now!

Three convenient and comfortable hotels will host the Symposium in downtown Chattanooga, Tennessee. The Chattanooga Marriott Hotel is connected to the Convention Center and the Staybridge Suites hotel is located right next door. The other host hotel, the Chattanooga Choo-Choo, is within walking distance and there is a free electric shuttle that will take you to the Convention Center. We encourage you to make reservations early, and check on flight options and ground transportation for your trip. See hotel details and reservation information and check on Chattanooga travel options…

Mobile workshops: learn from great trails at the Symposium

We’ll be showcasing trails and parks in the Chattanooga area for biking, paddling, horseback riding, caving, hiking, and recreation vehicles— plus art, interpretation, and family fun. The leaders and people of Chattanooga are enthusiastic about their trail projects and are looking forward to sharing them with you at the 2010 Symposium. Join us to experience the trails firsthand, and learn while you enjoy a wide variety of field trips. Learn about all the great options for mobile workshops…

ALERTS

We need your help in supporting Recreational Trails Program funding!

It is urgent to expand the voices supporting funding for trails and greenways. What will happen in your state if the Recreational Trails Program disappears? It is essential to get the thousands of trail advocates and project sponsors to think about that very real possibility. This is the most important year ever to get Members of Congress to know why RTP is important. Tell your Congressmembers! Invite them to visit a trail, see volunteers at work, or celebrate a trail opening. Tell the media, and send news clips to your Congressional offices. Read more about how you can support funding for trails and greenways…

2010 Coalition for Recreational Trails (CRT) Awards Announced!

The Coalition for Recreational Trails (CRT) has announced the winners of its "Annual Achievement Awards" in recognition of outstanding use of Recreational Trails Program (RTP) funds. The award winners were recognized at a special ceremony in Washington, D.C. on June 8, 2010 at the U.S. House of Representatives Rayburn House Office Building, during the annual celebration for Great Outdoors Week. Seven trail projects and two State programs have been chosen by the Coalition for Recreational Trails as recipients of its tenth Annual Achievement Awards. Click on the links to see details and photos of the projects…

2010 National Recreation Trails (NRTs) designated by Secretary Salazar!

Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced the designation of 31 trails in 15 states as National Recreation Trails, adding more than 716 miles of trails to the National Trails System. The NRT Program recognizes trails that provide opportunities for all Americans to enjoy the outdoors and improve the quality of life of our communities. The trails which were designated were announced in the first week of June as part of the National Trails Day events. Read more...

Plan now to attend America’s Great Outdoors’ Listening Sessions

The next one scheduled is for June 25 in Annapolis, Maryland.
The following listening sessions aretentative:

  • South Carolina: June 28 in Charleston (Details TBA)
  • Washington: July 1 in Seattle (Details TBA)
  • California: July 8 in Los Angeles (Details TBA)

More are in the planning stages and according to the Land Trust Alliance, there are plans to add Listening Sessions to existing events such as the Outdoor Nation Youth Summit in New York City on June 19-20 and the Outdoor Industry Association Trade Show in Salt Lake City on August 3-6.  You can find more information on the America’s Great Outdoors Initiative and submit comments online at: www.doi.gov/americasgreatoutdoors/. To learn more about upcoming Listening Sessions continue to visit the Secretary of Interior's website…

US DOT requests public comment on Strategic Plan for Transportation

The draft plan notes that during the 20th century, the U.S. benefited from building highway and aviation networks that fueled unprecedented economic prosperity and individual mobility, and connected the nation’s cities, towns, and regions to the rest of the world. However, in the 21st century, policies and individual investment decisions for highways, public transit, railroads, seaports, inland waterways, and airports often lacked an outcome-driven approach and at times conflicted with each other and with important national priorities. Transportation for a New Generation restores the focus of transportation decisions to the people and their communities. Read more…

Sustainable Communities Regional Planning Grants may help parks and trails

National Recreation and Park Association reports on the “Sustainable Communities Planning Grant Program.” Park and Recreation agencies nationwide are showing keen interest in this new grant program that will span urban to rural boundaries because parks, trails, public open space, and a variety of recreation resources are expected to be key components in plans developed by the regional partnerships that will be formed to apply for the grants. Read more…

Stay up to date on issues in Congress, new bills, and policies affecting trails

American Trails “SUPPORTING TRAILS” pages provide the facts on current issues and debates, and the ongoing efforts of American Trails to continue its 20 years of support for positive policies and funding for trails and greenways. Please join our efforts to document the value of trails and bicycle/pedestrian facilities as transportation infrastructure, and be an active and positive voice in the reauthorization process, economic stimulus proposals, and Federal land management agency budgets. We continuously add news and action items to these pages. Check back often and forward this link on through your networks…

NEWS

June is Great Outdoors Month: taking trails to Congress

The American Recreation Coalition (ARC) has again asked the President, State Governors, and the Mayor of the District of Columbia to proclaim June as Great Outdoors Month. The proclamations of June as Great Outdoors Month in America are especially appropriate this year as we see nationwide attention being given to active time in the Great Outdoors as key to better health, better education, and support for conservation causes. Read more from the American Recreation Coalition andview the President’s Proclamation and actual Proclamations from your State Governor…  

Childhood Obesity Task Force Action Plan: are trails part of the solution?

On May 11, 2010, First Lady Michelle Obama joined Domestic Policy Council Director Melody Barnes and members of the Childhood Obesity Task Force to unveil the Task Force Action Plan: Solving the Problem of Childhood Obesity Within a Generation. In conjunction with the release of the action plan, Cabinet Members and Administration Officials will hold events across the country to highlight the importance of addressing childhood obesity. Read more…

National Discovery Trails Act would designate new long-distance trail category

The American Discovery Trail Society is attempting to have the American Discovery Trail added to the National Trails System. This literally takes an "Act of Congress." Proposed legislation creates a new category of national trail, National Discovery Trail, and designates the American Discovery Trail as the first of these trails. The American Discovery Trail is the first coast-to-coast nonmotorized trail, and supplies a missing link that ties together the National Trails System. Read more…

Water trail facility manufacturer honored for innovation

EZ Dock, a sponsor of American Trails, was recognized for its EZ Launch water trail system for kayaks and canoes. The product provides ease of entry and exit, as well as allowing quick launch and recovery, and opens up paddle sports to a wider range of people. Read more…

Planners consider options in crossing radioactive site in downtown Cleveland

Planners of the ambitious and nearly complete hiking and bicycle, Towpath Trail, are facing three uncomfortable choices as they try again to stitch together the final few miles through a downtown Cleveland industrial area along the Cuyahoga River. Their preferred route is still blocked by the lurking presence of a parcel on the northeast corner of Harvard Avenue and Jennings Road where uranium was once refined. Read more…

“Take Our Children to the Park… and Leave Them There Day:” Are you in?

The idea behind it is simple: Most of us want our children to play outside and have fun, but this is impossible because there aren’t any OTHER kids outside for our kids to play with. This holiday is an attempt to break the cycle and get kids outside to meet each other and re-learn the lost art of playing! Read more…

FEATURES

President's “Great Outdoors” message inspires trails supporters

American Trails attended the historic White House Conference on America's Great Outdoors held on April 16 in Washington D.C. Robert Searns, Chair of the American Trails Board of Directors, shares his thoughts on why this is a great opportunity for trail and greenway advocates: “We encourage our readers and our membership to work actively in your respective areas of expertise and passion and in your communities to further these visions.” Read more…

Peninsula State Park "Like to Hike" Program encourages health

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources reports on efforts at Peninsula State Park to promote healthy outdoor recreation through the "Like to Hike" program. The program is modeled on a program offered in Lake County, Illinois. Engaging park visitors in low environmental impact, land based recreation is the program's primary goal. In addition, “Peninsula 100” rewards visitors who enjoy trails at other Door County parks. Read more and see photos… 

Evaluating the "Dangerous Trails of Duluth" for accessibility improvements

The Co-chairs of Wheels On Trails describe their experiences completing an accessibility project with a grant from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. The repair project has extended over two summers, with the major Accessible Trail Evaluation (ATE) work being done in the summer of 2007. City of Duluth repairs will improve accessibility for five of the eleven trails that were evaluated by the project. Read more and see photos…

Featured National Recreation Trail: Juniata River Water Trail, Pennsylvania

The Juniata River Water Trail is a component of a 320-mile corridor of natural wonders, history, culture, and recreation following the path of the historic Main Line Canal. The entire Water Trail is rated A-1, flat-easy water, perfect for beginner paddlers. Flowing through a predominantly rural landscape, the stream remains clean with good fishing. Maps and guides to the Juniata River Water Trail are available online from the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission. See photos and read more…

Your next adventure: find new trails and new friends

Why not expand your horizons and find some new trails this summer? American Trails provides lots of resources. Rather than a standard “trail finder” website, we give you all the connections. First, check out our State by State Trail Pages for trails sorted by activity type. You’ll find “Friends” groups, local trail organizations, and agencies with a wide variety of volunteer opportunities. Many of these organizations sponsor trips, work days, guided hikes, and other opportunities to meet other trail supporters. Get connected and get out on a new trail...

Read more articles, studies, and resources…

TRAINING & EDUCATION

Greenways and Trails Forum teaches planners and developers about trails

Bring together developers, builders, consulting firms, government, and nonprofit organizations for interactive discussion and information sharing about developments that incorporate well-planned and connected trails and greenways, the economic and market value of greenways and trails, and strategies for expanding the greenways and trails network in your local area. Read about the Developers Forum in Orlando, FL…

Appalachian Mountain Club sponsors courses in trail skills all summer

Help train trail volunteers! Take a day or a weekend to gain the know-how of trail building and maintenance. In cooperation with the U.S. Forest Service and the National Park Service, the AMC is proud to offer the Trails Skills Series, a unique blend of skill instruction and practical trail work, offered in beautiful locations throughout the Appalachian region. Read more about AMC educational programs…

“Featured training providers” brought to you by National Trails Training Partnership (NTTP)

The National Trails Training Partnership compiles information and training schedules from providers of trail-related courses nationwide. Training providers include agencies, organizations, businesses and trailbuilders, and states. Check out workshops you can host in your own area, as well as courses offered on a huge variety of topics. Then check the calendar for scheduled offerings. See the current list of key trails training providers…

Learn from hundreds of online studies and presentations

The American Trails online library has hundreds of articles, studies, and resources on every aspect of trails and greenways. We are gradually archiving presentations and award documentation from the National Trails Symposium as well as materials from other educational sessions. Our goal is to bring you the best and most complete references for furthering your own studies and research. See more resources on all aspects of trails and greenways…

Online Training Calendar covers classes and conferences for 2010

The National Trails Training Partnership is an effort by trails advocates to improve opportunities for training for the nationwide trails community. A wide variety of training is available in 2010 for volunteers and professionals working to develop trails of all kinds. American Trails is working with agencies and organizations across America to promote trail-related training. See details on these and many more 2010 opportunities for training on trails and greenways topics in the Online Training Calendar.

2010:

  • June 16-20, 2010 — Ice Age Trail University Mobile Skills Crew Training - Marathon County, WI
  • June 17, 2010 — Western Australian State Trails Conference - Perth, Australia
  • June 18-19, 2010 — Iowa Trails Summit - Cedar Falls, IA
  • June 19-20, 2010 — Outdoor Nation Youth Summit – New York City, NY
  • June 21-24, 2010 — Trailhead Ontario Conference - Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • June 22-25, 2010 — Accessibility Management in Parks, Recreation, and Tourism - Portland, OR
  • June 23-24, 2010 — Preparing Successful Grant Proposals - Indianapolis, IN
  • July 8-10, 2010 — Fábos International Conference on Landscape and Greenway Planning - Budapest, Hungary
  • July 14-18, 2010 — Leave No Trace Master Educator Course - Appalachian Mountain Club - White Mountains, NH
  • July 15-17, 2010 — Southeastern Equestrian Trails Conference - Norcross, GA
  • Nov. 14-17, 2010 — 20th American Trails National Symposium - Chattanooga, TN - Read more...
NEW RESOURCES

Improved database for a thousand National Recreation Trails now online

Try out the redesigned database of the National Recreation Trails! The online NRT Database contains information on 1,079 National Recreation Trails in all 50 states. Discover new trails in your own area or across the country. You can search for all designated trails in any state, or look up a specific trail by name. Other search functions enable you to display trails by land manager, trail type, or trail activities. Search the National Recreation Trails online database…

Restoration of multi-use trail system in Sam Houston National Forest

Sam Houston Multiple Use Trail System is an 85-mile network used by both motorized and non-motorized trail users and is located within an hour drive of Houston. This trail system has been used for decades and consists mainly of user made trails. The long years of use, combined with ineffective maintenance, and some trails being poorly located or constructed, resulted in some major restoration needs. Read more and see photo…

Photo gallery: examples of trails near homes and residential development

Bridges over canals and access trails from housing are often added to enable residents to reach trails. With multi-family residences, fences are definitely not required. It is also becoming common to see signs visible from trails advertising adjacent homes for rent or sale. Examples from Denver show that the managers apparently liked the trail-side advertising opportunity enough to replace the banners with newer ones a few years later. See photos and examples in our Cool Trail Solutions section…

Crusher fines can provide accessible surfacing for trails

Finely crushed rock (crusher fines) is a useful alternative to paving trails. According to trailbuilder Tony Boone, "Whether it's a trail to school in an urban area or a core loop of your open space trail system, crushed stone trails provide a user-friendly, all-season surface for all types and ages of visitors. If built properly crushed stone trails can meet the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Accessibility Guidelines." Read more and see photo gallery in our Cool Trail Solutions section…

Parks & Trails New York releases “Bicyclists Bring Business” guide

Community leaders and business-people seeking to benefit from the burgeoning interest in bicycle tourism now have a new resource to help them become more bicycle-friendly. Parks & Trails New York, in partnership with the NY State Canal Corporation and the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor, has released a new guide to the potential economic impact of bicycle tourists. It outlines the goals and needs of these visitors, and identifies steps to attract more of them. Although focused on the Canalway Trail, the guide’s contents will be useful to communities along other trails and bike routes. Download a pdf of the guide…

Planning and managing a statewide OHRV trail system in New Hampshire

Concerns expressed by both wheeled OHRV supporters and opponents are warranted as the number of participants is expected to increase in the coming years. In recognition of both its popularity and its accompanying controversy, public land managers have consequently determined that providing safe and well managed wheeled motorized recreation in New Hampshire is an appropriate task, and is in alignment with statewide recreational goals. As a result, the state general court declared it to be in the public’s interest to manage the demand for wheeled OHRV trails on state lands in conjunction with other recreation objectives. Read more and download the full report…

Read more articles, studies, and resources…

JOIN THE AMERICAN TRAILS NETWORK

Help American Trails fight for funding and support for trails

Now is a great time to join American Trails to help us advocate for trails and greenways of every kind. With your help, we can increase funding for trails, keep more trails open, and improve the health and well being of Americans of all ages and abilities. Please help us continue to serve you and the trails community by enlisting a new member or renewing your own membership today. Give the gift that makes a difference ~ an American Trails membership…

QUICK LINKS

 

Send news and calendar items to trailhead@americantrails.org.

Join us online

NRT Database

Join AT

cool trails

nttp



 

 

Trail Tracks e-Newsletter
June 2010