Yikes! Walk Seven Miles of Highway!
Call That Hiking?
Hikers had been hiking this section of the Florida Trail for years. Then suddenly, without prior notice, they faced
“NO TRESPASSING” signs!
This is the most recent trail closing hikers are facing across the nation.
See the Video below.
There are three hundred miles of the Florida Trail now on roads or highways of its 1500-mile route.
We hikers need to do something about them.
Our Nation’s Longest Trails Are All Facing Serious Problems
The Appalachian Trail is the only National Scenic Trail that is a continuous, protected foot-path from one end to the other.
All of the rest are disjointed routes.
There are over three hundred miles of gaps in the Pacific Crest Trail, five hundred miles of gaps in the Ice Age Trail,
and even bigger, uncounted gaps in the other five.
We need a million concerned hikers to sign the petition at Hiking Trails for America website to get the federal government help to close these gaps.
Congress was generous to designate these eleven magnificent National Scenic Trails for hikers.
Last year more than two million hikers trod a portion of the Appalachian Trail.
Thankfully, Congress enabled the Appalachian Trail to secure its entire 2180-mile route forever.
It is now protected from the kind of closure signs that Jamie Hamilton suddenly found on her section of the Florida Trail (above.)
Florida Trail Founder, Jim Kern’s Bucket List
For over fifty years Jim Kern has been building, preserving and protecting hiking trails .
Back in 1974 Jim came to my office in mid-town Manhattan when I began publishing Backpacker magazine to sell me a story about the Florida Trail.
Shortly thereafter, Jim was the only volunteer besides me to testify at the Appalachian Trail Congressional Oversight Hearings.
When I got a call to testify, I called every hiking and conservation organization I could think of to join me in testifying. Jim Kern was the only volunteer to show up for the hearings!
Yikes! We had to do something.
We got together with Paul Pritchard, then Executive Director of the Appalachian Trail Association, and formed the only national lobbying organization for trails to this day, the American Hiking Society.
We three have been advocating for trails ever since.
And now Jim has persuaded us to join him in achieving his “bucket list” — to close the serious gaps in the National Scenic Trails.
Congress had great foresight in designating the National Scenic Trails.
It left it to us hikers to finish the job. That means getting trail segments built, protected and maintained.
And mostly, we need to fill those gaps where hikers must leave the trails and walk many miles of roads and highways.
Your Help Is Vital
Wouldn’t you like to give back for what has been freely given to you?
It will take just two minutes to sign the petition on our website — Hiking Trails for America?
If you could also get a friend or two to sign, it would even help more, giving this effort a great boost!
It’s the first goal in our campaign — a million signatures on our petition!