Happy National Trails Day!

National Trails Day at Golden Gate National Recreation Area

Flickr, Maria Ly

On June 7, 2014, America celebrates National Trails Day.

From Alaska’s Denali National Park to South Dakota’s Jewel Cave National Monument to Oregon’s Mount Hood National Forest, wild lands across the continent are hosting events to celebrate trails. Activities include hikes, bike rides, river paddling trips, birdwatching expeditions as well as stewardship projects.

America’s trails not only help us access opportunities for recreation, adventure and respite. Trails support us in staying healthy and happy. Being outdoors combats stress, boosts creativity and even improves sleep. And what’s more, America’s outdoor recreation economy generates hundreds of thousands of jobs across the nation. Now that’s cause for celebration!

National Trails Day began as a way to highlight America’s National Trail System. This network includes 1,250 trails like the legendary Appalachian National Scenic Trail and the popular Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail.

These well-known trails were protected when the National Trails System Act passed in 1968. It was supported by many who’d worked to pass the forerunning Wilderness Act in 1964. Leaders Benton MacKaye and Harold Anderson later became founders of The Wilderness Society.

The Wilderness Society continues to celebrate trails all year long. We are currently working with the U.S. Forest Service and the Backcountry Horsemen of America to try to address the significant trail maintenance backlog in America’s National Forests. Together we have assembled a coalition of more than 50 recreation and conservation organizations to help increase the amount of work being done to maintain trails across the nation.

Join us in celebrating National Trails Day by supporting our work to keep our trails open for recreationists nationwide!

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