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Universal Trail Assessment Process

UTAP trail assessment classes and resources offered

The complete list of current UTAP training opportunities by date are posted on the National Trails Training Partnership Calendar.

See the Survey of State Trail Administrators on UTAP


Beneficial Designs, Inc., continues to offer the Universal Trail Assessment Coordinator Workshops throughout North America each year. UTAP provides objective, accurate information about the conditions on a trail or in outdoor environments. The assessment results can help trail users determine whether a trail meets their interests and abilities. Land managers can also use the information to identify areas where access may be limited and to determine whether a trail complies with the proposed accessibility guidelines.

See a discussion on UTAP and its goals with regard to the diversity of trail activity types.

photo of trail assessment

Measuring tread width as part of UTAP assessment

arrow Specific UTAP classes include:


Universal Trail Assessment Process Coordinator Workshops

This two-day workshop enables individuals to conduct accurate assessments of trails in their own community and to lead groups of untrained individuals in the completion of trail assessments. Individuals who achieve a minimum of 70% on the final written exam are also eligible to be certified by American Trails as a Trail Assessment Coordinator. To become certified, individuals must submit copies of the trail data that they have collected for a minimum of two trails which total at least one mile in length. The data are reviewed for accuracy before certification is awarded. Over 550 people have been trained through the 40 UTAP Coordinator Workshops that have been held since 1995.

UTAP Train-the-Trainer Course

Do you see yourself as a teacher? Someone who could teach the UTAP Coordinator Workshop? If so, Beneficial Designs and American Trails want you to join their team of UTAP Trainers. For individuals who have previously attended the UTAP Coordinator Workshop, the UTAP Trainer Course is 4 days in length. An extra day is required for individuals who have not previously completed the UTAP Coordinator Workshop. There are three levels of certification which enable graduates to train others in the techniques of the Universal Trail Assessment Process.

UTAP Update Clinic for Trail Assessment Coordinators

HereÕs your chance to make sure that your skills and knowledge about the Universal Trail Assessment Process are up-to-date with the most current information. A lot has changed since the first training courses were taught 5 to 7 years ago. The concept of universal design for all users has grown in popularity and we now have proposed guidelines from the Access Board for accessible recreation trails, outdoor recreation access routes, and beach access routes.

UTAP Train-the-Trainer Project

Beneficial Designs will work with you to identify qualified trainers who can teach these workshop at your facility. Why not consider hosting a UTAP Coordinator Workshop? For information on these and future UTAP workshops contact Beneficial Designs:

Accessible Trails Workshop: Understanding Accessibility and Building Better Trails

A one-day introduction to sustainable trail design and improving accessibility. Includes current legal issues with the Americans with Disabilities Act, the principles of Universal Trail Assessment Process, and hands-on trail analysis.



The National Trails Training Partnership

American Trails, P.O. Box 491797, Redding, CA 96049-1797 • (530) 605-4395 • Fax: (530) 547-2035 •

The National Trails Training Partnership is an alliance of Federal agencies, training providers, nationwide supporters, and providers of products and services. Visit the online calendar of training opportunities, access hundreds of trail-related resources, read the news, learn how you can help, and see training resources in your state.

This material is based upon work supported by the Federal Highway Administration under Cooperative Agreement DTFH61-06-H-00023. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the Author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the Federal Highway Administration.



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