Ice Age National Scenic Trail -- Photo by S. Haas
- Sept. 14, 2018
-- On October 2, 2018, America will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the National Trails System Act. With the passage of the National Trails System Act in 1968, America was given a gift – the creation and protection of some of America's most iconic places.
Today there are 19 National Historic Trails, 11 National Scenic Trails, more than 1,200 National Recreation Trails, and more than 2,000 rail-trails. The National Trails System touches all 50 states and Puerto Rico, crossing rural, suburban, and urban communities. Millions of people enjoy the trails for recreation, physical activity, historical studies, and active transportation each year.
For five decades, the National Trails System Act has preserved and protected the trails that lead people into new worlds on foot, by bike, and on horseback. The trails showcase routes as ancient as the Ice Age and as recent as the Selma to Montgomery March. Trails can take you into the deep backcountry or through the center of Washington, DC.
When President Lyndon Johnson made his 1965 speech, "Conservation and Preservation of Natural Beauty," he set into motion a unique cooperative preservation project. Trails represent the ideal in cooperative management. Many trails are maintained by government agencies, non-profit organizations, private landowners, volunteers, and service programs working together to preserve and protect these valuable resources.
Anniversary celebration events are taking place across the country and online. Visit www.trails50.org