Ten new national recreational trails have been added to the National Trails System by the Department of the Interior.
Interior Secretary Deb Haaland said the trails add 160 miles to the system, which now exceeds 1,300 national recreation trails. The new additions are located in eight states.
“As COVID-19 vaccination rates increase and our nation takes a collective and cautious sigh of relief, we need recreational resources now more than ever to strengthen physical, social, and mental health across our country,” Haaland said in a statement.
The national recreational trails program is administered by both the National Parks Service and the United States Forest Service. Trails can be added to the listing with the consent of the federal, state, local, nonprofit, or private entity that has jurisdiction over the trail.
“National recreation trails boost local economies and provide communities with safe, equitable access to the outdoors,” Haaland said.
Leaders at the National Parks Service were happy to add to the growing list.
“Trails connect neighborhoods, literally and figuratively,” NPS Deputy Director Shawn Benge said. “These newly designated national recreation trails recognize the incredible efforts of local trail stewards and enthusiasts to provide the public with close-to-home outdoor access for strolling, pedaling, or paddling.”
The newest additions to the system include:
Apache Creek Greenway
Park of the Westside Creeks Trails in San Antonio, this 4-mile trail runs along Apache Creek while intersecting with several city parks on the city’s westside. The trail helps tie together neighborhoods that represent the area’s Mexican-American history and Hispanic culture.
Bethel Spring Recreational Preserve Trail System
Located on Keel Mountain in Madison County, Bethel Spring Nature Preserve is a 360-acre parcel with 200 acres open to the public. It includes 1.8 miles of free trails and one of the county’s largest waterfalls.
Chapman Mountain Recreational Preserve Trail System
Located east of Huntsville, this 459-acre property includes 3.28 miles of trails for hiking, biking, and horseback riding. It also includes a large pavilion and a disc-golf course.
Located east of Fort Laramie, this 1.6-mile trail meanders along the banks of the North Platte and Laramie rivers as they reach their confluence. It is known for the wide variety of plant and wildlife along the trail.
Crabtree Cove Trail
Located at Stockton Lake in Cedar County, three separate loops comprise the 2.59 miles of trails that lead visitors to swimming areas, bird watching sites, and picnic areas around the dam.
Farmdale Trail System
Located near East Peoria and Washington at the Farmdale Reservoir Area, this series of 16.3 miles of bike trails winds through valleys, creeks, forest, and wildflowers on both hardened dirt to twisting single-track trails.
Green And Nolin Rivers Blueway
Located within Mammoth Cave National Park, the blueway includes 36 miles of waterways that can be explored by paddlers who want an up-close view of the park and nature.
Green Mountain Recreational Preserve Trail System
Located outside Hunstville, this 366-acre preserve features streams and waterfalls that flow into the Tennessee River and 4.9 miles of trails with various difficulty levels.
Greenbrier River Trail
Located between Cass and North Caldwell in eastern West Virginia, this 77-mile trail is a former railroad passing through several towns and plenty of remote areas. It crosses 35 bridges and is a favorite for hiking, biking, and horseback riding.
Piney Knob Trail System
Located outside Murphy in Cherokee County, Piney Knob includes more than 13 miles of hiking and mountain biking trails. Each one is a dirt, single-track trail built to International Mountain Bicycling Association standards.