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THE NATIONAL RECREATION TRAILS (NRT) program works to preserve and celebrate our nation's pathways. We invite you to explore America’s great national system of trails and greenways.

arrow See the year by year Annual NRT Designations page

arrow Search over 1,000 National Recreation Trails in the online database

arrow See the state-by-state index of Featured National Recreation Trails


2009 NRT designations

From the National Park Service
U.S. Department of the Interior

AMERICAN TRAILS IS PROUD to host the National Recreation Trails website and to help more people know about these great trails. In announcing the new designations, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar said, “From coast to coast, the National Trails System helps connect American families with the wonders of the outdoors. These new National Recreation Trails, built through partnerships with local communities and stakeholders, will create new opportunities for fitness and stewardship, while creating a lasting legacy for our children and grandchildren.”

Each year nominations for designation of new National Recreation Trails may be submitted. The NRT Program recognizes trails that provide opportunities for all Americans to enjoy the out-of-doors and improve the quality of life of our communities.

The following trails were designated as National Recreation Trails for 2009:

Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail
This 7.5 mile multi-use, handicapped accessible asphalt and boardwalk trail winds through the pristine coastal forests within the City of Orange Beach and Alabama’s Gulf State Park.

San Jose Trail Network
Three connecting trails— the Guadalupe River Trail, Highway 237 Bikeway, and Coyote Creek Trail North— provide 16.4 miles of recreation opportunity in San Jose.

Moraine Hills Trail System
The four components of this trail system in Moraine Hills State Park total 10.2 miles for cycling, mountain biking, hiking, jogging, and cross-country skiing.

Fort Wayne and New Haven Rivergreenway
This 23-mile linear park in Fort Wayne and New Haven is located along the banks of the St. Marys, St. Joseph, and Maumee Rivers.

Pioneer Nature Trail
This 1.3-mile trail at Council Grove Lake is managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Two trail loops feature upland woodlands, tallgrass prairie, and the remnants of buffalo wallows.

Great Barrington Housatonic River Walk
Volunteers built and maintain this half-mile of artfully crafted riverside walking trail and canoe access in downtown Great Barrington.

photo of river and trees

Niobrara Scenic River is the site of a Nebraska water trail


Niobrara Scenic River, Ft. Niobrara National Wildlife Refuge Section
This 5.6 mile river segment offers visitors a unique scenic recreational floating experience. The river cuts a deep canyon in the limestone rocks that underlie Nebraska’s famed Sand Hills.

Hackensack River Greenway through Teaneck
This pedestrian walkway and nature trail connects three parks and offers views of the river, cityscape, and mountains. Award-winning interpretive signs designed by local artist Richard Mills are found along its 3.5-mile length.

• Chenango Canal Towpath Trail
This six-mile trail is ideal for walking, jogging, horseback riding, bicycling, and cross-country skiing along the placid waters of the historic Chenango Canal in and near the town of Madison.

• Feeder Canal Towpath Trail
This nine-mile linear park adjoins one of the last surviving in-use portions of the original New York Canal System, the Glens Falls Feeder Canal, joining Queensbury and Kingsbury.

Historic Champlain Canalway Trail
This scenic 1.75-mile segment of the projected 58-mile long Canalway Trail corridor in Halfmoon appeals to bird watchers, history buffs, and health-conscious recreationists.

Walkway Over the Hudson
The 1888 Poughkeepsie-Highland railroad bridge over the Hudson River has been re-engineered for pedestrians, hikers, joggers, bicyclists, and people with disabilities to enjoy the scenic view 212 feet above the water.

• Pittsburgh to Harrisburg Main Line Canal Greenway segments:

• Greater Hazleton Rails to Trails
This four-mile multi-use rail trail in Hazleton forms the core of a future metro area-wide trail system. It features scenic views, rare plant communities, picnic areas, and interpretive signs. Numerous partners have provided park benches, bike racks, exercise stations, and flower beds.

• Susquehanna River Water Trail – North Branch Section
Paddlers along the 181 miles of the North Branch of the Susquehanna River enjoy mountain views, river towns, and historic structures, as well as birds and other wildlife, fish, and camping at 17 river campsites.

Cameron Park Trails
This 20-mile system of trails in Waco features handcrafted bridges, views of the Brazos and Bosque Rivers from 100-foot cliffs, and cedar groves. Trail events and tourism bring over $1 million per year to the local economy.

• Occoquan Water Trail
The 40 miles of the Occoquan Water Trail offer an unparalleled opportunity for boating adventure and exploration only 20 miles southwest of Washington, DC. Visitors are invited to discover ancient hemlock groves, granite cliffs, Civil War sites, relic structures, the historic port Town of Occoquan, remnant settlements, and wildlife sanctuaries.

Kohl Park Hiking Trail
The Milwaukee Conservation Leadership Corps constructed this two-mile long trail. Partnerships with local scout troops have improved the trail. Local residents volunteer to keep it litter free. It connects people to green space in densely populated Milwaukee County.

The National Recreation Trail Program recognizes trails that provide opportunities for all Americans to enjoy the out-of-doors and improve the quality of life of our communities. For more about the new designations and details of many featured trails, please visit:

trail noteEach year nominations for designation of new National Recreation Trails may be submitted. Details of the program may be found on the NRT website hosted by American Trails: (

See how to update online trail information in the National Recreation Trails online database or send changes by e-mail to



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The on-line database has details on the currently designated National Recreation Trails. The NRT Program online is hosted by American Trails:


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