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Katie Test, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy
202.974.5152 (office)

Rails-to-Trails Conservancy Offers Selection of Perfect Rail-Trails for Turkey Weekend

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Each year, on the third Thursday of November, millions of families come together to enjoy great food and fellowship. With time off from work and school, people all over the country are looking for ways to get out of the house before and after Thanksgiving and participate in holiday traditions. Luckily, there's always a two-for-one deal on a rail-trail: fun family activity and exercise. To help you get in on the action, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC) has put together a sampling of prime pathways to keep you busy during the four-day weekend.

  1. Cape Cod Rail Trail, Massachusetts
    While the pathway doesn't take you right to Plymouth Rock, the 22-mile Cape Cod Rail Trail serves up the ultimate Pilgrim experience for Thanksgiving. This asphalt trail begins in Dennis and twists through quaint villages and sandy beaches, stretching past a diverse landscape of salt marshes, pine forests and cranberry bogs.
  2. Joe Rodota Trail, California
    On the west coast, the Joe Rodota Trail offers a special treat along Highway 12 with the Willie Bird Turkey Farm. While there, you can actually select your main course from Willie Bird Turkey Farm's roasted, smoked, free-range and organic turkeys, as well as other options. But don't stop your trip there—this 13-mile trail winds through Santa Rosa to Forestville, offering beautiful views of farms, vineyards and other agricultural lands. You'll also pass through the town of Sebastopol, which boasts a number of shops and amenities, so pick up a few holiday gifts before heading back home.
  3. Chief Ladiga Trail, Alabama
    Can you think of a better way to celebrate National American Indian Heritage Month than to visit the Chief Ladiga Trail in northeast Alabama? The nearly 33-mile Chief Ladiga Trail is a regional playground that passes through welcoming towns and pastoral landscapes. Following a former CSX railroad corridor, the rail-trail is named for a Creek Indian leader. Remarkably flat and smooth, the trail arcs from Woodland Park in Anniston northeast through small towns and quiet countryside to the state line, where it now connects with Georgia's Silver Comet Trail.
  4. Great Allegheny Passage, Pennsylvania
    If you thought your turkey's poundage was impressive, the Great Allegheny Passage runs directly by an ostrich farm in Somerset County, Pa., only a few miles west of the town of Meyersdale. Now the longest rail-trail on the east coast, this 150-mile crushed stone pathway stretches from the outskirts of Pittsburgh all the way to Cumberland, Md., taking trail users on a delightful tour of historical, geological and architectural landmarks and marvels.
  5. Foothills Trail, Washington
    Who says pumpkins are just for Halloween? If you take a trip along the Foothills Trail in Pierce County, you can have your pumpkins and eat them too. The 28-mile, multi-surface path runs through two spectacular pumpkin farms. The Foothills Trail has been constructed in sections as finances, environmental permits and county ownership have allowed. Once complete, the trail will run from Buckley to Puyallup. Remember to share your pumpkin pie.

For more specific details about trailheads and driving directions, as well as photos and user reviews, please visit Rails-to-Trails Conservancy's trail-finder,

Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, a nonprofit organization with more than 100,000 members, is the nation's largest trails organization dedicated to connecting people and communities by creating a nationwide network of public trails, many from former rail lines and connecting corridors. Founded in 1986, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy's national office is located in Washington, D.C., with regional offices in California, Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania. For more information visit

Rails-to-Trails Conservancy
The Duke Ellington Building
2121 Ward Ct., NW
5th Floor
Washington, DC 20037