Wilderness Trails: Special Places, Special Considerations

This webinar will provide some basic information on trails in federally-designated Wilderness, examples of practical experiences, and resources to learn more.

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Event Details

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December 01, 2022

10:00 AM to 11:30 AM (Pacific Time) {more time zones}

11:00 AM to 12:30 PM (Mountain Time)
12:00 PM to 01:30 PM (Central Time)
01:00 PM to 02:30 PM (Eastern Time)


FREE for members
FREE for nonmembers

Learning Credit Cost: FREE


Closed Captioning is available for this webinar.
Learning Credits
are available for this webinar.

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Webinar Sponsor

This webinar is free to the public, thanks to a generous sponsorship from Maine Recreational Trails Program Advisory Committee.


Webinar Outline

In total, approximately 18% of federal land administered by the four major federal land management agencies, and nearly 5% of all land in the United States, has been designated as wilderness. Trails are a primary way that visitors enjoy and experience these special places— where humans are visitors who do not remain. While the word “wilderness” may have very different meanings to each of us, federally-designated “Wilderness” has an official definition and the agencies have legal stewardship responsibilities which impact how trails are planned, constructed, managed, maintained, and used in these areas. Three presenters will provide some basic information on Wilderness, trails in Wilderness, examples of practical experiences, and resources to learn more.

Learning Objectives:

  • Provide basic Wilderness information including the Wilderness Act, the designation process, the amount-extent-variety of Wilderness, and the priorities for Wilderness stewards (agencies, partners, and volunteers).
  • Provide basic information and considerations for trails and trail use in Wilderness.
  • Provide some recent, real-life examples of Wilderness trail maintenance, management, construction, and administration situations in Wilderness.
  • Provide information on available resources for information about Wilderness and Wilderness trails.


This webinar qualifies as a Health, Safety, and Welfare (HSW) course (via LA CES).

Questions & Answers

Webinar Resources

Arthur Carhart National Wilderness Training Center

Wilderness Connect

National Wilderness Skills Institute Recordings

  • National Trails System Act
  • Presenter PowerPoint Presentation

    Pacific Crest Trail Association (PCTA) Resources


    Webinar Partners


    Pete Irvine, retired, USDA Forest Service
    Roanoke, Virginia

    PETE IRVINE, USFS-retired, former Wilderness and Trails Program Manager, GWJeffNFs, Roanoke, VA; home of 23 Wildernesses and ~2,100 miles of trails.


    Dan Abbe, Wilderness Specialist, Arthur Carhart National Wilderness Training Center
    Missoula, Montana

    DAN ABBE, Wilderness Specialist and USFS Representative at the interagency Arthur Carhart National Wilderness Training Center; Missoula, MT


    Ian Nelson, Regional Representative, Pacific Crest Trail Association
    Medford, Oregon

    IAN NELSON, Regional Representative (N.CA & S.OR) for the Pacific Crest Trail Association (PCTA), Medford, OR; his territory covers ~425 miles of the PCNST, traveling through 7 Wildernesses.


    Closed Captioning

    We are offering closed captioning for our webinars, thanks to a partnership with VZP Digital. If you are in need of this service, please email us prior to the webinar. An unedited transcript will be sent to all attendees following the webinar.

    Learning Credits and CEUs

    American Trails is proud to be a certified provider of the following learning credits and continuing education opportunities:

    • American Institute of Certified Planners Continuing Maintenance (AICP CM)
    • Landscape Architecture Continuing Education System (LA CES) (most HSW approved)
    • National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) CEU equivalency petition
    • CEU/PDH equivalency petition for other accepting organizations

    Learning credits are free for attendees for American Trails webinars and the International Trails Summit, as well as for other trail and outdoor recreation-related conferences, webinars, and workshops we offer credits for. Learn more here.



    While we may individually agree (or disagree) in whole or in part with any or all of the participants, the views expressed in these webinars are not necessarily representative of the views of American Trails as an organization or its board and staff. Unless specific situations are noted by presenters, nothing in American Trails webinars should be considered to be interpreted as a standard.

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    2,242 views • posted 05/18/2022