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Stabilized Engineered Wood Fiber for Accessible Trails

Installation and Serviceability Results: Governor Dodge State Park, Wisconsin

Trails made with wood chips are difficult for those who use mobility aids because the surface is soft, uneven, and shifting.

by USDA Forest Service


Wood Fiber Trails


This report describes the development of a concept for stabilizing engineered wood fiber (EWF) to improve wheelchair and walker accessibility for outdoor recreational trails where traditional paving would be costly and would detract from the natural aesthetics. The applicability and field performance of two binderñEWF systems previously developed for an outdoor playground were tested on a beach path and two bridle trails. The stabilized EWF (SEWF) system enhanced accessibility and should reduce erosion and maintenance costs for trail systems. Overall, the two systems performed well on the beach path but were not adequate for the bridle paths. Cost estimates and step-by-step instructions are provided for installing SEWF.

Published November 2004

About the Author


To sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the Nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations.

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