National Trails Day June 2
On Saturday, June 2, the American Hiking Society will celebrate its 15th annual National Trails Day, the largest annual single-day trails and outdoor celebration in the country. Hundreds of thousands of people are expected to get outside and attend more than 1,000 events taking place nationwide.
The American Hiking Society urges everyone to get on the trail and make everyday National Trails Day because of the many benefits trails provide to individuals, communities, and the environment.
Individual benefits: National Trails Day promotes the health benefits of trail use, especially hiking. Hiking gets your heart pumping, lungs expanding, and muscles working. It helps relieve stress and contributes to weight loss, controlling high blood pressure, and preventing serious ailments such as heart disease and diabetes.
Community benefits: National Trails Day fosters community-building. It brings together people from all ages and backgrounds, including toddlers just learning how to walk, Girl Scouts earning a badge for their participation, and seasoned hikers who have logged many miles. It’s a time to get outside and get to know your neighbors. It also provides local governments and trail clubs with much-needed volunteer sweat equity hours to restore and maintain trails. Last year volunteers spent more than 135,000 hours establishing, maintaining, and cleaning-up nearly 1,700 miles of trail—labor worth an estimated $2.5 million.
Environmental benefits: National Trails Day raises public awareness about the many environmental benefits of trails. Trails serve as conservation corridors, help protect plants and wildlife, and serve as outdoor classrooms for nature study and environmental education. Connecting with nature on a trail instills conservation values and inspires the public to take action to protect our natural heritage.
“Celebrating National Trails Day is an excellent way to promote healthy lifestyles and connect with nature,” said Gregory Miller, president of the American Hiking Society. “Trails are life-enriching places, and hiking is the best nature-based recreational activity for a lifetime of health and fitness.”
National Trails Day events take place in local, state, and national parks, forests, and other public lands from coast to coast. Activities include hiking, biking, horseback riding, paddling, trail dedications, park clean-ups, trail work projects, and much more. To find a National Trails Day event near you, visit AmericanHiking.org.