Rails-to-Trails Conservancy is a nonprofit organization dedicated to creating a nationwide network of trails from former rail lines and connecting corridors to build healthier places for healthier people.

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The Vision of the Great American Rail-Trail

Picture yourself … pedaling across the entire country on a safe, seamless and scenic pathway—or walking a local trail that connects along historic routes. Imagine the incomparable experience of exploring America’s heritage by trail—its potential, its beauty and bounty, its people and places. Consider the economic opportunities and the benefits for communities along the route of a multiuse trail that stretches more than 3,700 miles between Washington, D.C., and Washington State.

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RTC tells the story of the impact that trails have on our communities through the Rails to Trails Magazine and our TrailBlog.

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Rosendale Trestle along the Wallkill Valley Rail Trail in New York

What is a Rail-Trail?

Rail-trails are multipurpose public paths created from former railroad corridors. These paths are flat or gently sloping, making them easily accessible and a great way to enjoy the outdoors. Rail-trails are ideal for many types of activities--depending on the rules established by the local community--including walking, bicycling, wheelchair use, inline skating, cross-country skiing and horseback riding.

History of the Movement How a Rail-Trail is Made

How You Can Help

Your support helps Rails-to-Trails Conservancy bring more trails to more people.

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Latest on TrailBlog


A Closer Look: Connecting the Lower Rio Grande Valley by Trail

A Closer Look: Connecting the Lower Rio Grande Valley by Trail

Caracara is the name of the trail system developing throughout Cameron County, Texas, and the Lower Rio Grande Valley—a project that Rails-to-Trails...

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Four Long-Distance Rides Along the Great American Rail-Trail

Four Long-Distance Rides Along the Great American Rail-Trail

What better way to experience the beauty of America’s amazingly diverse landscapes than by bicycle? When complete, the Great American Rail-Trail will...

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Trail Tourism Adventures Await Along Salmonberry Corridor in Oregon

Trail Tourism Adventures Await Along Salmonberry Corridor in Oregon

On the outskirts of Oregon’s largest city, there lies a treasure trove of outdoor adventure and wonder—the Salmonberry Trail, a planned multiuse trail...

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2000+

No. of rail-trails in U.S.

24,000+

Miles of rail-trails in the U.S.

34,000+

Miles of multiuse trail in the U.S.

50

No. of states with rail-trails