National Trails Day
Whether you're a leisurely day walker or a hardcore hiker, there's a US National Trail with your name on it. Thankfully the trails in the national network are categorized as 'Scenic,' 'Historic,' or 'Recreational' to simplify things. The most famous pathway is the Appalachian Trail ('Scenic'), which was the first to be officially named to the National Trails System when President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the system into law in 1968.
In a speech three years earlier, Johnson had said, 'We can and should have an abundance of trails for walking, cycling, and horseback riding, in and close to our cities. In the backcountry, we need to copy the great Appalachian Trail in all parts of America.' His vision took root, and today there are protected trails across the US, with much of their upkeep carried out by enthusiastic volunteers. If you need an incentive to hit the great outdoors, we reckon this image should do the trick. Banner Peak and Thousand Island Lake in the Ansel Adam Wilderness are highlighted along both the Pacific Crest Trail and the John Muir Trail.
Today is National Trails Day, established by the American Hiking Society as a day of public events aimed at advocacy and trail service. On this day, 'Thousands of hikers, bikers, rowers, horseback riders, trail clubs, federal and local agencies, land trusts, and businesses come together in partnership to advocate for, maintain, and clean up public lands and trails,' the AHS explains. The society aims to protect and enhance US National Trails for generations to come. A current focus is to make sure that trails are inclusive and accessible to everyone.