The Trail Fund is a joint initiative of the Trails Move People Coalition, led by American Trails.
Investing in nationwide trails community capacity. We envision a more collaborative trails community and lower maintenance, sustainably funded, better connected trails systems.
What the program does:
Supports partners to complete trail
research, design, planning, stewardship and maintenance projects that are inclusive, foster improved trail user behavior and connect trail assets to a broader spectrum of users.
Trail managers, stewardship organizations, and other members of the trail research, education and stewardship community.
Typical project size: Projects range in size. We fund between 1K and 10k
No match required: No in-kind or cash match required, but some match preferred.
Funding cycle: Opens fall 2023 for 2024 field season. Funding must be spent in 2 yrs.
Creating more resilient and sustainable National Forest Service trails,and restoring, protecting, and maintaining crucial watersheds on our national forests and grasslands
What the program does:
Enables project partners to complete trails projects which improve watershed health, restore aquatic organism passages, preserve access, and decommission unauthorized and previously closed trails.
Nonprofit organizations and non-Federal agencies
Typical project size:
Small projects may apply for between 5-20K Large projects may apply for up to 100K
50% Match: No cash match required. In-kind match is acceptable.
Funding cycle: Opens fall 2022 for 2023 field season. Funding must be spent in 2 yrs.
Which program should I apply for?
The Trails Capacity Program funds trails research, stewardship training, and trail maintenance on private or public land, whereas the Legacy Trails Program is only for projects on national forests and grasslands managed by the USDA Forest Service. Please get in touch if you need help figuring out which funding program might be right for your project.
Are these funds for all trails types?
Yes! We fund projects for all trails users, and for motorized and nonmotorized trails.
What do I need to do before applying?
It’s a good idea to have a clearly defined project and strong community support for your project well ahead of the application deadline. You will need letters of support, a detailed project budget, and a project timeline. If you are thinking of applying to the Legacy Trails Program, get in touch with your local Forest Service District Ranger well in advance. You will need to get a letter of support and/or formal written agreement with them before applying for funds. For more details about how to apply for trail funds through American Trails, go to thetrailfund.org.
If we are awarded a grant, what will be expected of us?
Awardees become partners in helping promote American Trails and The Trail Fund. You will be asked to send out a press release and other publicity around your project to local and social media and to share images with American Trails of your project before, during, and after completion. We also ask for a final project report.
For Legacy Trails Progam awardees, you will be asked to work with your local Forest Service District Ranger for any publicity and send American Trails a final project report.
How do I find out more information?
Other questions? Send an email to [email protected].