As the Summer of Service comes to an end, American Hiking Society is proud to report that 2009 was a record breaking year for its 17th annual National Trails Day® (NTD). With a 47 percent increase in the number of events registered from 2008 to 2009, NTD 2009 speaks of the overwhelming interest in outdoor recreation and the commitment of Americans and communities to protect and care for our trails.
This summer, President Obama called on all of us- young and old, from every background, all across this country- to participate in our nation’s recovery and renewal by serving our communities. On Saturday, June 6, more than 150,000 volunteers and trail enthusiasts in all 50 states and Puerto Rico showed their commitment to community service by maintaining 1,711 miles of trail. A total of 35,590 volunteers contributed 177,950 hours of volunteer labor, worth an estimated $3.6 million at 643 trail work projects. Hikers, bikers, paddlers, trail runners, walkers, horseback riders, birders, and all other trail enthusiasts came out in full force to show their support, despite reports around the country of cold and wet weather.
“American Hiking Society’s NTD is an open invitation to all Americans to get outside and celebrate our nation’s trails,” notes Gregory Miller, President of American Hiking Society. “NTD has inspired thousands of people to take part in trail maintenance projects, hikes, bike and horseback rides, paddle trips and other activities.” As a recreation-based non-profit organization, American Hiking champions conservation issues, builds partnerships between public and private stakeholders, and provides critical resources to plan, fund and develop foot trails.
Additional Highlights from NTD 2009: • An increase of 519 events from last year • 1,631 NTD events registered with American Hiking Society
• Participants hiked or walked 3,515 miles and bikers rode 2,069 miles
• To coincide with NTD 2009, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced the designation of 22 new National Recreation Trails in 13 states
• NTD reached more than 150 million people through extensive media coverage
• 63 percent increase in the average number of NTD events this decade – the average number of events from 2000 to 2004 was 760 events, while the average from 2005 to 2009 was 1,240 events
Save the date for the next National Trails Day on Saturday, June 5, 2010!
National Trails Day is made possible by the generous support of our Lead Sponsor, Nature Valley, and Sponsoring Partners, Backpacker magazine, Fetzer Vineyards and Merrell. NTD Supporters include YMCA of the USA, REI and American Park Network. Federal Partners of NTD are Bureau of Land Management, Federal Highway Administration, National Park Service, USDA Forest Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
For more information about National Trails Day®, visit www.AmericanHiking.org. Founded in 1976, American Hiking Society is the only national, recreation-based nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting and protecting America’s hiking trails, their surrounding natural areas and the hiking experience. To learn more about American Hiking Society and its mission and programs, visit www.AmericanHiking.org or call (301) 565-6704.