Apply for The Trails Capacity Program

The Trails Capacity Program is administered by American Trails, and funds trail maintenance, research, and stewardship training across the country, serving all types of trail users.

On this page:

The application window is now closed and will reopen in November or December of 2024.

Overview

The Trails Capacity Program is administered by American Trails, and funds trail maintenance, research, and stewardship training across the country, serving all types of trail users. The amount of funding available and number of grants we can offer will vary year by year, pending funding.

Please review the Program Overview page for the most updated information prior to applying.

Email [email protected] if you have any questions.

Preparation Materials

Below is a list of preparation materials needed in order to apply. All items must be submitted for your application to be considered for funding. The online form does allow you to save and continue at a later date, if need be, and will allow you to print your completed details before you submit.

For more information, please see What criteria does this program use for awarding grants? on the Program Overview page.

Below is a list of questions asked in the application process:

  • Are you a current or former recipient of grant funds from American Trails?
  • Organization Information:
    • Organization/Agency Name
    • Organization Address
    • Organization Website
    • EIN
    • W-9 (for agencies)
  • Contact Person for Application
    • First name, Last name
    • Contact person Phone
    • Contact person Email
  • Project Location Information
    • Project State or Territory
    • US Congressional District
    • County
    • Trail name(s) and special areas supported (max 25 words)
    • Land ownership (public or private and agency or owner)
  • Detailed Proposal/Project Information
    • Project Name (to help identify and for promotion)
    • Project Type: Stewardship Training, Maintenance, and/or Research
    • Within a wilderness area?
    • Motorized/nonmotorized or N/A
    • Designed use of project (type of trail user(s)
    • Project Synopsis (used for promotion) (no more than 100 words)
      • Include amount requested, scope of work, project partners, timeline of accomplishments, milestones, and outcomes.
      • If maintenance, include approximate miles of trails
      • If stewardship training, include approximate number of volunteers/staff to train
      • If research, include primary outcome being studied
    • Approximate Number of Staff Involved/hours
    • Approximate Number of Volunteers Involved/hours
    • Civilian Conservation Corps Members/hours
    • Project Timeline
      • Include length of project as well as acknowledgement that funding will be used by or before December 31 of the award year.
  • Project Description - Please expand on project synopsis. Include specific desired accomplishments, who/what this project would would benefit and the overall impact of this project in terms of capacity building. (250 words)
    • Describe how this project protects the environment and advances the program goals. What is the breadth of support by and impact upon the local community?
  • Quantifiable project characteristics
    • If maintenance or research, approximate miles of trails.
    • If stewardship training, approximate number of volunteers/staff to train).
  • Financial Aspects of Project
    • Project Budget & Financial Match Information
      • Include categories that the funding will be used for with approximate dollar amounts for each. (spreadsheet)
      • Narrative: Describe sources of match. No in-kind or cash match required, but some match preferred. (Max 100 words)
    • Letter of Support (minimum 2) (upload files)
    • IRS Letter of Determination of Nonprofit Status Status or W-9 for agencies (upload files)

Important Dates

  • Application Portal Opens: December 4, 2023
  • Application Deadline: January 15, 2024 by 11:59 PM Pacific Time
  • Announcement of Awardees: March 1, 2024
  • Funding Provided to Awardees: March 15, 2024
  • Deadline for Funds to be Used: December 31, 2024
  • Report Deadline for Awardees: February 1, 2025

Apply Now

The application window is now closed and will reopen in November or December of 2024.

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2024 Trails Capacity Program Awardees Announced

posted May 3, 2024

American Trails is excited to award funding to seven more trails projects in our Trails Capacity Program.

American Trails Announces $500K Fundraising Goal for the Trails Capacity Program

posted Apr 5, 2023

The Trails Capacity Program administered by American Trails is funded by sustaining corporate sponsors and individuals. We are excited about our fundraising goals, and looking forward to opening the program later this year as funding is secured.

Trails Capacity Program 2022/23 Impact Report

posted Apr 3, 2023

As of March 2023, American Trails has funded 14 projects through the Trails Capacity Program.

2023 Trails Capacity Program Awardees Announced

posted Mar 14, 2023

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