America's National Trails System

"A national trail is a gateway into nature’s secret beauties, a portal to the past, a way into solitude and community. It is also an inroad to our national character. Our trails are both irresistible and indispensable."

—STEWART UDALL, US Secretary of the Interior (1961–69); 1920–2010  

The National Trails System Act of 1968, as amended, calls for establishing trails in both urban and rural settings for people of all ages, interests, skills, and physical abilities. The National Trails System promotes the enjoyment and appreciation of trails while encouraging greater public access. The system includes national scenic trails, national historic trails, and national recreation trails.

The National Park Service encourages all public and private agencies to develop, maintain, and protect trails. With the cooperation and support of a nationwide trails community, the vision of an interconnected, cross-country trail system will become a reality. 


Featured Trail: Selma to Montgomery

Featured Trail: Selma to Montgomery

The Selma to Montgomery National Historic Trail tells the story of the Civil Rights march for African American citizens' right to vote.

Hiker on the Pacific Crest Trail

National Scenic Trails

Explore your National Scenic Trails

Covered wagon on the Oregon Trail

National Historic Trails

Explore your National Historic Trails

Trail leading through rocks and fog

National Recreation Trails

Explore your National Recreation Trails

#RecreateResponsibly

#RecreateResponsibly

The National Trails System supports the current #RecreateResponsibly movement

Health & Wellness

Health & Wellness

The National Trails System encourages you to safely experience and learn more about your National Trails

Last updated: June 5, 2020