American Hiking Society
America has 200,000 miles of trails that, as the American Hiking Society puts it, “allow us access to the natural world for recreation, education, exploration, solitude, inspiration, and much more. Trails take us to good physical and mental health by providing us with a chance to breathe fresh air, get our hearts pumping, and escape from our stresses.” We couldn’t have said it better.
Of course, these expansive trails come at the cost of a lot of hard work on the parts of the people who help organize for, plan around and essentially build the trails we use on a regular basis. As such, it’s only appropriate that we take time out of our busy lives to appreciate not only the trails themselves but also the work that goes into their very existence. National Trails Day — held every year on the first Saturday of June — is one such time when everyone can come together to celebrate trails through a wide range of events including “hiking, dog walking, bike riding, trail maintenance, birding, wildlife photography, geocaching, paddle trips, trail running, trail dedications, health-focused programs, and children’s activities,” among others. Pioneered by the American Hiking Society and its outstanding volunteers, National Trails Day boasts events in all 50 states —and you can easily find an event in your area here.
Osprey is a proud sponsor of the American Hiking Society, the only non-profit, national organization dedicated solely to the promotion and protection of foot trails and the hiking experience, and it is a great honor to have the personal and professional opportunity to participate in Hike the Hill Trails and Advocacy Week 2011, Febuary 12-17 in Washington D.C.
Saturday was a full day of issues briefings getting all attendees up to speed, while Sunday was spent on advocacy training dialing in the message. On Monday, 2-14, all will hit the ground running advocating for trails with elected officials, individual federal agencies and appropriations committees. You can learn all the details about the American Hiking Society here: http://www.americanhiking.org.
And speaking of Monday, February 14th, I would like to issue a Call To Action for all of you who may be in the D.C. area to come out and show your love of trails by joining us for the actual Hike the Hill where we will march from the Lincoln Memorial (east steps) to the U.S Capitol to help raise awareness for trails and the preservation of our nation’s treasured landscapes. We gather at 8:45AM with opening ceremonies commencing at 9:00AM. The Hike on the National Mall, which is open to the general public, begins at 10:00AM and we are scheduled to hit the west steps of the U.S. Capitol at 11:30AM where Hike the Hill Advocates will then proceed to Congressional and Agency meetings. You can obtain all the details here: http://www.americanhiking.org/Hike-the-Mall.
So what are you doing to show your love of trails on Valentine’s Day? Helping us raise awareness for the importance of trails and hiking for your health, for your community pride and for the preservation of our nation’s treasured landscapes, of course!
I hope to see you there with bells on-please stand by for more as the week unfolds!