Apply for The Legacy Trails Program

Interested in Applying for Funding from The Legacy Trails Grant Program?

 

On this page:

Overview

American Trails is pleased to partner with the U.S. Forest Service in continuing the Legacy Trails Grant Program. This program is funded through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and supports partner trail projects that further the Legacy Roads and Trails criteria on National Forest System trails throughout the nine Forest Service Regions. The goal of the program is to support projects that restore, protect, and maintain watersheds on our national forests and grasslands. American Trails is administering this grant program, and is soliciting applications for funding, with awards up to $100K per project. Learn more on our Legacy Trails Program Overview page.

Eligibility

Project applicants may include nonprofit organizations, businesses, or agencies at the state or local level. Projects must be entirely located on land managed by the United States Forest Service. For more information on specific types of projects that are eligible for funding, and other questions, please see the Legacy Trails Program FAQ here.

photo credit: Jeremy Diem
2023 Awardee Idaho Trails Association's Yellowbelly Trail Project

2023 Awardee Idaho Trails Association's Yellowbelly Trail Project

 

Funding Priorities

The Forest Service identifies and prioritizes watershed acres or areas where Forest Service roads and trails may impact water quality in streams and water bodies. Protecting threatened, endangered, and sensitive species, and community water sources are among the top priorities for projects that improve and maintain trail access. Emergency operations, such as evacuation routes during wildfires, floods or other natural disasters also benefit from this program.

The Application Process

Before submitting your application through the application portal, please gather the following application materials. Watch this optional pre-application webinar for more information.

 

To prepare, below is a list of questions asked in the application process:

  • Applicant Contact Information/eligibility
    • Organization/Agency Name
    • Organization/Agency Address
    • Contact Person for Application
    • Contact Person Email
    • Contact Person Phone
    • Organization Website
    • EIN or letter of support from agency leadership
    • Annual Budget
  • Project Location Information
    • US Congressional District Where Project is Located (use this link to find your district)
    • County Where Project is Located
    • USFS Region (use this link for more information)
    • National Forest or National Grassland
    • USFS District
    • Forest Service Coordination (describe coord. with local USFS District/Forest)
    • Name of local Forest Service Line Officer
    • Email for local Forest Service Line Officer
    • Phone for local Forest Service Line Officer
    • Trail Name(s) and Special Areas Supported
  • Detailed Proposal/Project Information
    • Is your project mostly or entirely within a designated Wilderness area?
    • Primary Designed Use of Project (Motorized or Nonmotorized)
    • General Description of Project (max 150 words)
      • Include scope of work, timeline, outcomes and partners.
    • Designed Use of Project (type(s) of users)
  • Project Eligible Activities
    • Project accomplishments (select from a list)
    • Primary Problem Addressed by Project (from dropdown list)
    • Other Problems Addressed by Project
  • Social Aspects of Project: Staff, Volunteers and Corps Information
    • Number of Staff/Crew that will support this project
    • Staff/Crew Hours that will support this project
    • Number of Volunteers involved
    • Volunteer Hours
    • Civilian Conservation Corps/Youth Corps (number of members involved)
    • Corps Hours
    • Social benefit of, and community support for this project (max 150 words)
  • Economic/Financial Aspects of Project
    • Project Budget
      • Include an outline of items that the funding will be used for with approximate dollar amounts for each item.
    • Grant Funds Requested (up to $100k)
    • Cash Match
    • In-Kind Match
    • Describe sources of match (max 150 words)
      • How are cash/in-kind contributions applied toward this project?
    • Economic Impact and Investment (max 150 words)
      • Describe the impact and value of your project as an investment.
  • Environmental Aspects of Project
    • Number of trail bridges improved or replaced
    • Number of culverts improved or replaced
    • Miles of trail improved, or constructed to standard
    • Miles of deferred maintenance eliminated
    • Miles of unauthorized trail decommissioned
    • Miles of previously closed trail decommissioned
    • Miles of road converted to trails
    • Number of species positively impacted
    • Miles of upstream habitat reconnected
    • Additional structures or deferred maintenance work to be accomplished
      • Describe any other project improvements (max 150 words).
    • Describe how this project addresses the environment (max 150 words)
      • Describe how this project improves ecological resiliency
      • Does it improve a watershed that supplies public drinking water?
      • Does it mitigate other impacts that are of locally high concern?
  • Overall Project Impact
    • How does this project improve the National Forest Trail System and meet the goals of the Legacy Roads and Trails Program.?
      • Include how it addresses user conflict/safety
  • Supporting Documentation
    • Letter of support from Forest Service Line Officer (upload files)
    • Map or additional documents (upload files)
    • Project photo(s) (upload files) No more than 10 images please.

Important Dates

  • Application Portal Opens: October 2, 2023
  • Application Deadline: December 1, 2023 by 11:59 PM Pacific Time
  • Announcement of Awardees: February 1, 2024
  • Funding Provided to Awardees: February 15, 2024
  • Interim Project Report(s) TBD
  • Deadline for Funds to be Used: December 31, 2025
  • Final Report Deadline for Awardees: February 1, 2026

 

Webinars on YouTube that you might like

Legacy Trails Grant Program: 2024 Pre-Application Overview

Aug 3, 2023

This webinar will outline the exciting trails funding opportunity and is intended to help members of the trail community to understand if this funding program is right for their needs.

More resources in this category

2023 Legacy Trails Program Grant Awardee Portal

posted Apr 3, 2023

Below you will find documents that may be useful as you prepare your invoices.

2023 Legacy Trail Program Awardees Announced

posted Feb 2, 2023

We are excited to announce the winners of our 2023 Legacy Trail Program grants. In the first year of this program, we funded a total of $1.35 million to 33 organizations.


9,321 views • posted 10/02/2023