About the Coalition for Recreational Trails

Building and protecting the RTP for everyone

The Coalition for Recreational Trails (CRT) is an alliance of national and regional trail-related organizations across a broad spectrum of interests representing motorized and nonmotorized communities. Its members work together to build awareness and understanding of the Recreational Trails Program, which returns federal gasoline taxes paid by off-highway recreationists to the states for trail development and maintenance.

The Whiskey Run Mountain Mountain Biking Trail located in Bandon, Oregon was awarded $214,618 in Recreational Trails Program funds in the year 2016.

The Whiskey Run Mountain Mountain Biking Trail located in Bandon, Oregon was awarded $214,618 in Recreational Trails Program funds in the year 2016.

CRT was formed in 1992 following the passage of the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act (ISTEA) to ensure that the National Recreational Trails Fund (now known as the Recreational Trails Program or RTP) established by that legislation received adequate funding. During the six years of ISTEA, CRT worked to ensure that the program was continued and strengthened as part of the ISTEA reauthorization process. Following the 1998 enactment of the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21) and the 2005 Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU), both of which significantly increased RTP program funding, CRT’s efforts focused on RTP’s continued, effective implementation. Those efforts resulted in the reauthorization of RTP in the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) in 2012 and the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act in 2015 at funding levels equivalent to the last year of SAFETEA-LU – slightly more than $84 million overall annually. CRT efforts are now focused on:

  • Continuing and enhancing the RTP at the state and federal level;
  • Educating policy makers and the public about the RTP’s accomplishments; and
  • Ensuring that the return of federal gasoline taxes to the program is equitable, that the allocation of those funds among the states reflects current fuel-usage data, and that the utilization of those funds is efficient, effective, responsive and accountable.

Contact the CRT Leadership


CRT Annual Achievement Awards

Every year, the CRT sponsors the Tom Petri Annual Achievement Awards as part of the ongoing effort to build awareness and appreciation of the highly successful Recreational Trails Program. Outstanding projects funded by RTP are honored at the awards ceremony. Special guests, including Members of Congress, are always invited to participate in the celebration.

Nominate a Great RTP Project, Program, or Committee


Recreational Trails Program Council of Advisors

As a member of the Coalition for Recreational Trails, American Trails urges organizations of every size and interest to become a Supporter of the Recreational Trails Program. CRT has created a Council of Advisors to help support the continuation and expansion of the Recreational Trails Program in upcoming legislation, as well as to encourage State Governors not to “opt-out” of the RTP under the current FAST Act. By joining the Council, the Advisors agree to sign on to letters supporting RTP that will be sent to Members of Congress, the Administration, or to relevant State Governors and/or Legislators. In addition, Advisors are asked to recruit other RTP supporters and to help in a variety of ways.

To date, over 500 organizations have signed on as members of the CRT’s RTP Council of Advisors.

Join the Recreational Trails Program Council of Advisors now.

Submit the Sign-on Form