This Saturday the American Hiking Society and thousands of people across the United States at hundreds of events celebrate National Trail Day, the nation’s largest annual celebration of trails. It is a time to enjoy and show your appreciation for trails by doing something to make them better for everybody. Typical activities include hikes, biking and horseback rides, paddling trips, birdwatching, geocaching, gear demonstrations, stewardship projects and more.
National Trail Day is an Uncharted day. Our goal at Uncharted is to help you make your own discoveries, experience new adventures and gain new skills that empower your journeys. We hope everyone will join us this Saturday on National Trail Day to visit a favorite or new trail, enjoy it for a while, and do something nice for that trail that you enjoy so much.
You might also consider visiting one of literally hundreds of National Trail Day events being held across the country. In reviewing these events, there are ten that stand out as perfectly suited for an Uncharted explorer at heart:
1. Trail Reclamation, Bear Mountain State Park, N.Y. You might recall our earlier blog post where we discussed Uncharted’s drive to empower our audience with the information, tools and skills they need to go where there is no path, leaving a trail for others to follow. Given Uncharted’s commitment to acts of exploration, education and service, awarding the No. 1 spot to the New York-New Jersey Trail Conference’s Trail Reclamation event was an easy choice. Those who come, will work with Trail Builder and Educator, Ama Koenigshof, and the Bear Mountain interns to help build trails on the mountain.
2. Summer Outdoor Slam, Curt Gowdy State Park, Wyo. This event showcases great things to do outside-hiking, cycling, rock climbing, fishing, archery, kayaking, and more. You’ll be able to try your hand at all these activities. Environmental education, art in the park, and wildlife identification are also offered. Instruction is lead by the Wyoming Game and Fish Department.
3. Experience the Gem at Your Own Backdoor – the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge, Trenton, Mich. Hosted by the International Wildlife Refuge Alliance at the Humbug Marsh Unit, you can explore these trails and experience the last untouched mile of shoreline on the Detroit River. Two trails are available for use, including one where you will likely see nesting bald eagles soar above the water. Another trail takes you back to an old oak-hickory forest with 300-year-old trees! At noon EST. you can help with a reforestation project in the Refuge Gateway by planting trees from noon to 2 p.m. Plant a native tree, get the GPS coordinate, and watch it grow in the upcoming years. Families are welcome!
4. XtremeFest of the Blue Ridge, Constitution Park, Waynesboro, Va. This event will show you the ins and outs of adventure sports like rock climbing, kayaking, mountain biking and hiking with a goal to promote a healthy, active lifestyle. There will be something for everyone–novices included. The event also includes day product demonstrations and informative classes. You also can test your skills with opportunities to hike, bike, paddle and climb throughout the day.
5. Geocaching the Boggy Creek Trail, Jimmie Davis State Park, La. Geocachers can enjoy a great family day exploring the Boggy Creek Trail and searching for six newly-placed geocaches. GPS coordinates are available at the park entrance station. The trailhead is located in the boat launch parking lot.
6. National Trail Day Summer Sampler: Rock Climbing Skills, Crow Hill, Mass. Enjoy a day of climbing at Crow Hill and learning skills for safely moving over steep terrain, brought to you by the Appalachian Mountain Club. Rope-work will be taught and reviewed, climbing skills will be demonstrated and practiced, and you will have an opportunity to complete single pitch rock climbs. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for info.
7. The California Trail Demonstrations, Southfork State Recreation Area, Nev. Hosted by Nevada State Parks. Meet at the East campground. Demonstrations will reflect the hardships, hazards and triumphs experienced by families who dared to journey west. Journey back in time and see what life was like for these pioneers who were in search of a better life. Call the park for more information at 775-744-4346.
8. National Trail Days Low Impact Canoeing, Deerfield & Connecticut Rivers, Mass. Enjoy canoeing and camping trails of water, also known as rivers! Instruction on bow and stern canoe paddling strokes and managing a canoe or kayak in strong currents is available as needed.
9. First Ever Park Volunteer Event, Powhatan on the James State Park, Va. Come out to help a brand new state park preparing to open later in June 2013. It will be their first ever volunteer work day to help them prepare for their grand opening. Hot Dog Lunch and brief organizational meeting of the Friends of Powhatan State Park at noon EST.
10. Photo Scavenger Hunt, Groen Park, Chatfield, Minn. Take pictures while hiking on the Lost Creek Hiking Trail. Photos will be submitted to and judged by members of the Bluff Country Hiking Club.
These are just a sampling of great events being held this Saturday on National Trail Day. Chances are high that if you can’t make it to any of the Uncharted Top 10 National Trail Day events, there will still be plenty of others to choose from wherever you are at. Check the National Trail Day event finder for a Trail Day event near you.
We’ll be excited to see how your trail day went. Post a photo of your trail day event on our Facebook page to inspire the rest of us. Happy trails!