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Partnership’s Statement upon Passage of the Great American Outdoors Act in the House

July 22, 2020 The Partnership for the National Trails System issued the following statement from Board President Barney Scout Mann upon passage of the Great American Outdoors Act in the U.S. House of Representatives: Today’s vote to pass the Great American Outdoors Act (GAOA) and…

Valerie Rupp named Executive Director of the Partnership for the National Trails System

Valerie Rupp named Executive Director of the Partnership for the National Trails System

The Partnership for the National Trails System (PNTS) has appointed Valerie C. Rupp of Baltimore, Maryland, to serve as the new Executive Director for the organization which represents 30 national scenic and historic trails. Valerie currently is Corporate & Foundation Stewardship Director for Baltimore’s People…

Fall National Trails Workshop Moves to Virtual Format

Fall National Trails Workshop Moves to Virtual Format With much careful thought and deliberation, a consensus decision was reached earlier today at the Trail Leaders Council meeting to cancel the Partnership for the National Trails System’s in-person Fall Workshop (scheduled for October 26-30, 2020 in…

The Partnership’s Statement of Solidarity

The Partnership for the National Trails System stands in solidarity with the Black community and other people of color in condemning recent injustices — especially loss of life — as well as the systemic racism that has persisted in our country for generations.  The Partnership…

Trails link people to landscapes and culture

Now more than ever we need our parks, natural areas and trails. Together we can build and improve accessibility and put the national scenic and historic trails on the map and into your home! Trails link people to landscapes and culture. During this time of…

Fall Workshop: Willingess to Travel Survey – Due June 7

From RG Absher, Chair of the Fall Workshop Committee: Friends – As you know, the Partnership’s Fall National Trails Workshop has been scheduled for October 27, 28, and 29th, 2020 in Spartanburg, South Carolina. As the host organization for this event, we have been working…

Enjoy a national trail today!

Now more than ever we need our trails, natural areas and public outdoor spaces. Together we can build and improve accessibility and put the national scenic and historic trails on the map and into your home! Every day, the staff of the Partnership for the…

A breath of fresh air – the National Trails System

Now more than ever we need our trails, natural areas and public outdoor spaces. Together we can build and improve accessibility and put the national scenic and historic trails on the map and into your home! During stressful times, it is well known that a…

Trails enrich your community

Now more than ever we need our trails, natural areas and public outdoor spaces. Together we can build and improve accessibility and put the national scenic and historic trails on the map and into your home! Are you curious about the area where you live…

PNTS Letters to Congress: Trails and Economic Stimulus

Attached are letters that the Partnership for the National Trails System sent to House and Senate leadership on May 5th and March 23rd urging specific attention to trails as they work on a long-term economic stimulus and infrastructure package. Now is a good time to…

Putting trails on the map and into your home!

Now more than ever we need our trails, natural areas and public outdoor spaces. Together we can build and improve accessibility and put the national scenic and historic trails on the map and into your home! The founders of the National Trails System anticipated scenic…

Fall Workshop: Call for Presentation/Session proposals – Due May 15th

From RG Absher, Chair of the Fall Workshop Committee:  I’m excited about the prospect of the Overmountain Victory Trail Association (OVTA) hosting the PNTS National Trails Workshop in Spartanburg, South Carolina on October 26th – 30th, 2020. This workshop is intended to serve the interests…

A time of transition and momentum for trails during Hike the Hill 2020

A time of transition and momentum for trails during Hike the Hill 2020

By Kathy DeCoster, PNTS Advocacy and Policy Director, and Samantha Haas, PNTS Communications Coordinator More than 100 people representing 40 trail organizations and advocates from throughout the country traveled to Washington, D.C. this February to “Hike the Hill.” Now in its 23rd year, Hike the Hill®…

PNTS Cancels Spring National Trails Workshop

UPDATE 3/20/2020: PNTS Cancels Spring National Trails Workshop Regrettably, we have decided by consensus among PNTS leadership and workshop leads to cancel the Partnership’s Spring National Trails Workshop scheduled for May 18-22, 2020 at Ghost Ranch in New Mexico. This is highly unfortunate and yet…

COVID-19 Updates for National Scenic and Historic Trails

Trail friends, advocates and partners: As you know, the COVID-19 situation is evolving quickly. Public health experts urgently advise those at lower risk of illness to take proactive precautionary measures (like social distancing, self-quarantining when sick, washing hands) not just to protect themselves, but to…

PNTS Seeks New Executive Director

PNTS Seeks New Executive Director

Partnership for the National Trails System Seeks New Executive Director The Partnership for the National Trails System (PNTS or The Partnership) seeks a dynamic, entrepreneurial and visionary Executive Director to build on the organization’s 27-year legacy of accomplishments and guide its work to the next…

2020 Trail Workshops – Spring (Canceled) & Fall (Scheduled)

2020 Trail Workshops – Spring (Canceled) & Fall (Scheduled)

Additional information will be posted as available on the Workshop webpage. In the meantime, please send your questions to the workshop contacts. Spring Workshop – CANCELED (UPDATE 3/20/2020): Regrettably, we have decided by consensus among PNTS leadership and workshop leads to cancel the Partnership’s Spring…

Preserving critical resources and closing gaps along national scenic and historic trails

Preserving critical resources and closing gaps along national scenic and historic trails

by Gary Werner, Executive Director, Partnership for the National Trails System Congress’s intent in establishing the National Trails System was for national scenic trails to be continuous off-road pathways and for both the national scenic and national historic trails to preserve the natural, cultural, historic, and…

Celebrating 10 years as part of the National Trails System

Celebrating 10 years as part of the National Trails System

In 2009, four new national scenic and historic trails joined the National Trails System, bringing the total number of Congressionally designated trails to 30. In 2019, nonprofit and Federal partners shared each trail’s history, accomplishments, and 10th anniversary events. To learn more about the trails, visit…

National Trails System 50th book to benefit PNTS

National Trails System 50th book to benefit PNTS

by Partnership for the National Trails System Adapted from news releases Steve Elkinton, former National Park Service (NPS) Program Leader for the National Trails System, has written the book, “A Grand Experiment—The National Trails System at 50.” Learn how the concept of a National Trails…

Help secure full annual funding of the LWCF and donate to support the work of the PNTS

Help secure full annual funding of the LWCF and donate to support the work of the PNTS

by Gary Werner, Executive Director, Partnership for the National Trails System As we begin the second 50 years of building, protecting, interpreting, and maintaining the national scenic and historic trails, several new opportunities offer the prospect of significantly enhancing our efforts. The Partnership for the National…

Make the connection – the National Trails System

Make the connection – the National Trails System

I am Alex Stigliano, Program Director for the Florida Trail Association. I devoted a decade of my career to teaching outdoor leadership skills to students of all ages because I believe it is the perfect classroom. People see themselves, each other, and their world most…

Find America’s Trails – Out There!

Find America’s Trails – Out There!

At 13, I was the smallest boy in my class. “Hey, Shrimp!” was a refrain often heard. On a 50-mile backpacking trip, my 80-pound body wrestled with a 35-pound pack. But “out there,” I found scenes more beautiful than pictures on a museum wall. Out…

Experience the heart of history on America’s national trails

Experience the heart of history on America’s national trails

I am Margaret Gorski, a volunteer leader with the Lewis and Clark Trail Heritage Foundation. In 1991, I was a U.S. Forest Service employee sitting in a circle of Nez Perce elders high in the Bitterroot Mountains of Idaho. I looked across a vast jumble of tree…

Explore. Dream. Discover – the National Trails System is here for you!

Explore. Dream. Discover – the National Trails System is here for you!

I’m Gary Werner, the Executive Director of the Partnership for the National Trails System (PNTS). Our organization advocates for the 30 amazing trails that together create an American legacy, the National Trails System. As a child, I walked with my parents across the glacial terrain…

Find Adventure on America’s Trails—Become a Supporter Today

Find Adventure on America’s Trails—Become a Supporter Today

Anish on the Continental Divide Trail. Photo Credit: Heather Anderson I am Heather Anderson, a 2019 National Geographic Adventurer of the Year. I am also Anishinaabe, and I am known as Anish on the trails. I have hiked and run 30,000 miles on our national…

NTS Webmapping Application: A foundation for National Trails System Geographic Information Systems

NTS Webmapping Application: A foundation for National Trails System Geographic Information Systems

By: Peter Bonsall, Geographer – GIS Specialist, and Matt Robinson, GIS Specialist, National Park Service and Appalachian National Scenic Trail, respectively A Geographic Information System (GIS) is a powerful tool that allows users to view a variety of geographic data, perform spatial analysis, and conduct locational…

Trail Apprentice Spotlight: Lauren Murray

Trail Apprentice Spotlight: Lauren Murray

By: Partnership for the National Trails System, adapted from former Trail Apprentice submissions It’s been 10 years since the Partnership for the National Trails System first offered Trail Apprentice (TA) scholarships, funded by multiple Federal agencies, to young adults. We caught up with some members…

The future of the National Trails System faces fundamental challenges

The future of the National Trails System faces fundamental challenges

By Gary Werner, Executive Director, Partnership for the National Trails System In 2018 as we began our year-long commemoration of the 50th Anniversary of the National Trails System Act, I briefly described these fundamental challenges that we in the National Trails System community face to fully…

Adventures from ‘Get Off the Web and Into the Wild’

Adventures from ‘Get Off the Web and Into the Wild’

During National Park Week, April 20-28, 2019, the Partnership for the National Trails System encouraged people to take a break from social media and explore the outdoors instead. Those who joined PNTS in the pledge to “get off the web and into the wild” substituted…

Get Off The Web And Into The Wild

Get Off The Web And Into The Wild

Did you know that national scenic and historic trails connect and travel through over 80 national parks? The Partnership for the National Trails System (PNTS) encourages people to take a break from social media during National Park Week, April 20-28, 2019, as a way to…

Trails community experiences Congressional victory during Hike the Hill 2019

Trails community experiences Congressional victory during Hike the Hill 2019

More than 100 people representing nearly 40 trail organizations from throughout the country traveled to Washington, D.C. this February to “Hike the Hill.” Now in its 22nd year, Hike the Hill® is a joint effort between the Partnership for the National Trails System (PNTS) and…

Support the Partnership for the National Trails System this Giving Tuesday

Support the Partnership for the National Trails System this Giving Tuesday

#GivingTuesday will take place on November 27th, and the Partnership for the National Trails System (PNTS) will be participating in this global day dedicated to giving. Over 40,000 organizations in 71 countries have joined the Giving Tuesday movement. Since its founding in 2012, Giving Tuesday has inspired giving around…

#SaveLWCF to Save Our Trails

#SaveLWCF to Save Our Trails

Urge Congress to permanently reauthorize LWCF with full, dedicated funding The Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) expired on September 30th, threatening the future of our national trails, parks, and public lands. “Without any action from Congress, a program that is widely supported, provides more…

50th Anniversary Initiatives by Nonprofit and Federal Partners

50th Anniversary Initiatives by Nonprofit and Federal Partners

HIKING CHALLENGES Modeled after the North Country Trail Association’s successful “Hike 100 Challenge,” this year the North Country, Arizona, and New England national scenic trails are challenging trail users to hike 50 miles to earn a special patch or other prizes in commemoration of the…

Hike the Hill 2018 kicks off 50th Anniversary of the National Trails System Act

Hike the Hill 2018 kicks off 50th Anniversary of the National Trails System Act

A week in D.C. More than 125 people representing nearly 40 trail organizations from throughout the country traveled to Washington, D.C. this February to “Hike the Hill.” Hike the Hill® is a joint effort between the Partnership for the National Trails System (PNTS) and the…

2017 Accomplishments of the Partnership for the National Trails System

2017 Accomplishments of the Partnership for the National Trails System

By Gary Werner, Executive Director of the Partnership for the National Trails System During 2017, the Partnership for the National Trails System (PNTS) continued to provide the educational and information sharing services it has for years to the National Trails System community. Pathways Across America…

OIA produces Outdoor Recreation Economy reports

OIA produces Outdoor Recreation Economy reports

Adapted from Outdoor Industry Association news releases, reports, and Headwaters Economics website In 2017, the Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) released the largest and most comprehensive national and State-level reports on the Outdoor Recreation Economy. OIA also produced a State Funding Mechanisms for Outdoor Recreation report,…

Natural disasters damage trails, full extent unknown

Natural disasters damage trails, full extent unknown

Adapted from information from partner organizations and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration So far 2017 ties the record year of 2011 for the most (15) billion-dollar disasters for the year to date, according to the National Centers for Environmental Information. Among those costly and…

NCTA improves GIS program and digital map access

NCTA improves GIS program and digital map access

By David Cowles, Director of Development, and Matt Rowbotham, GIS Coordinator, with the North Country Trail Association The North Country National Scenic Trail has had an active GIS program since the late 1990s, first starting with combined efforts between the National Park Service and the…

Help us make the 50th Anniversary generate increasing resources to sustain national trails

Help us make the 50th Anniversary generate increasing resources to sustain national trails

By Gary Werner, Executive Director of the Partnership for the National Trails System The National Trails System 50th Anniversary next year provides a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to focus much greater attention on our national scenic and historic trails and to inspire both our longtime supporters and…

In Memoriam: Jere Krakow—NPS, friend of the trails

In Memoriam: Jere Krakow—NPS, friend of the trails

By Bill Martin, Past President of the Oregon-California Trails Association Jere Krakow, a friend of the trails and a friend to all who knew him, passed away peacefully on November 3, 2017, at his home in Albuquerque, New Mexico, following a yearlong battle with cancer.…

Trail Safe! video resources for trail volunteers

Trail Safe! video resources for trail volunteers

By Daniel Watson, National Park Service Volunteer Coordinator with the Ice Age National Scenic Trail Greetings from the Ice Age National Scenic Trail! The colorful logo you see associated with this article is one I hope becomes very iconic for all of us in the…

PNTS Welcomes Two Communications Coordinators

PNTS Welcomes Two Communications Coordinators

By Gary Werner, Executive Director of the Partnership for the National Trails System Greetings from the Partnership for the National Trails System! We now have the services of two new experienced and skilled women to help further and amplify the good work we are all…

25 Years of the National Trails Community Working Together—Part 3

25 Years of the National Trails Community Working Together—Part 3

By Gary Werner, Executive Director of the Partnership for the National Trails System During 2007-2008, the Partnership for the National Trails System (PNTS) collaborated with our Federal agency national trail administrators and leaders of The American Hiking Society, American Trails, and the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy to…

GIS Analysis Identifies Remaining Wildlands along the Lewis and Clark NHT

GIS Analysis Identifies Remaining Wildlands along the Lewis and Clark NHT

Author: Ryan Cooper National Park Service staff recently completed a project in collaboration with The Wilderness Society using GIS to analyze the composition of land cover and status of vegetation condition and identify conservation protections along the 3,700 mile Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail. The trail commemorates…

Giving Our Trails a Voice in Washington, D.C.

Giving Our Trails a Voice in Washington, D.C.

We Hike the Hill Above: Christy Corzine, PNTS board member, and Gary Werner, PNTS Executive Director, pose for a picture outside the Department of Interior South Building Over 100 individuals representing over 40 trail organizations from throughout the country traveled to Washington, D.C. this February to…

2016 In Review

2016 In Review

2016 was a year of great opportunity and continuing challenges for the National Trails System. Here is a recap of the year and what we can expect moving forward. Congressional Actions The 114th Congress adjourned in early December after passing another Continuing Resolution to fund the…

Bill Buck’s Top 10 National Trail Sites with Outstanding Historic Experiences

Bill Buck’s Top 10 National Trail Sites with Outstanding Historic Experiences

Top 10 National Trail Sites with Outstanding Historic Experiences Exert from “The Top Ten Guide to National Trails” by Bill Buck. Photo by Bill Buck. The National Trails System is an essential way to immortalize our nation’s defining moments—from the tragic to the transcendent, the…

2016 National Historic Trails Workshop

2016 National Historic Trails Workshop

An Overview From June 6th-9th, national historic trail non-profit and agency partners came together in Independence, MO for the 2016 National Historic Trails Workshop. During this time, it became apparent to me that national historic trail partners face numerous challenges. Though each trail is unique,…