An educational trail, or nature trail, is a wonderful resource to a community or greenway. Typically, these trails meander through a natural area, offering marked stations or stops next to points of natural, technological or cultural interest.
While much of the standard guidelines apply, there are special considerations to consider with nature trails. Nature trails should offer significant visual appeal, sampling elements of the landscape such as a pond or wildflower garden as well as offering educational signage.
The University of Arkansas released an extensive guide, Nature Trail Development on Small Acreages, which serves an excellent overview.
Also, consider studying the work of other nature trails. You can find all the nature trails we have profiled, as well as other resources specific to nature trails, by browsing the NATURE TRAIL tag, in the resource library.
Be sure to check out these related resources, including a webinar on interpretive design:
The Wolf River Greenway Trail is a 1.67 mile long paved, shaded trail that parallels the Wolf River. It provides pedestrians and bikers with views of the river and several ponds, wildlife habitat, and lush timberlands.
Database management; website development; trail and facility inventories; trail assessment and maintenance records; identifying and gathering needed information.
The one-mile trail provides a chance to enjoy the natural world at Silvio O. Conte National Fish and Wildlife Refuge.
Located in the Funk Waterfowl Production Area, this 3-mile backcountry loop trail is a bird watcher’s paradise, providing habitat for millions of bird.
Located south of Dubuque along the Mississippi River, the 20-mile trail system provides opportunities for recreation as well as environmental education.