The U.S. Department of the Interior recently designated 41 trails as National Recreation Trails, adding almost 650 miles of trails to the National Trails System.
Spanning across 17 states, the land and water trails provide opportunities for communities to connect with nature and enjoy the great outdoors as part of a healthier lifestyle.
The announcement comes in advance of National Trails Day on Saturday, June 4, when hundreds of organized activities including hikes, educational programs, bike rides, trail rehabilitation projects, festivals, paddle trips, and trail dedications will take place around the country.
The National Recreation Trail designation recognizes existing trails and trail systems that link communities to recreational opportunities on public lands and in local parks across the nation. Each of the new National Recreation Trails will receive a certificate of designation, a letter of congratulations from Secretary Salazar, and a set of trail markers.
The new trails join a network of more than 1,100 previously designated trails that total more than 13,000 miles.
The National Recreation Trail program is jointly administered by the National Park Service and the U.S. Forest Service in conjunction with a number of other federal and nonprofit partners, notably American Trails, which hosts the national recreation trails website at http://www.americantrails.org/nationalrecreationtrails.