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Focus Term: Featured Magazine Articles

American Icon: The Great American Rail-Trail Is on Its Way to Fulfilling a Cross-Country Vision
May 07, 2024
Five years after launch, the Great American Rail-Trail is on its way to fulfilling a cross-country vision. See updates across the route.
Eastern Continental Divide tunnel along the Great Allegheny Passage ( | Photo courtesy Dave Majors
Elements of Gold: Michigan’s Pere Marquette Rail-Trail Is a Special Place for All Seasons
April 08, 2024
The Pere Marquette Rail-Trail is like a gold standard for the quality of the trail and the upkeep and something people can enjoy all the time.
The Tridge along the 30-mile Pere Marquette Rail Trail in Michigan | Photo by Cory Matteson
First in Class: Washington Trailblazer Clara McCarty Wilt Was UW’s First Graduate
March 04, 2024
The first graduate from UW was the trailblazing Clara McCarty Wilt, who would also go become the first woman elected to public office in WA.
Clara McCarty Wilt and YWCA friends, likely in the 1920s | Photo courtesy University of Washington Libraries, Special Collections (POR2339)
Wintertime Trail Fun
February 01, 2024
Winter brings a whole new way to explore trails such as cross-country ski, snowshoe, fat-tire bike or take a walk through the sparkly snow.
Alaska's Tony Knowles Coastal Trail | Photo by Jody O. Photos
Awaiting Takeoff: The Wright Brothers’ Biking Legacy
December 04, 2023
On a gray North Carolina beach, 120 years ago this December, Wright Brothers completed the first powered flight of a heavier-than-air aircraft.
Wilbur Wright working in the Wright brothers’ Dayton, Ohio, bicycle shop in 1897
End of the Line: How Timber and Train Tracks Transformed the Olympic Peninsula
October 25, 2023
This History Along the Great American Rail-Trail® feature explores the timber industry and creation of two railroads on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula in the early 1900s. The late-1918 completion of the Spruce Railroad, which was meant to aid the war effort, led to a national scandal.
U.S. Spruce Production Division splicing an eye into cable during a logging operation | Photo courtesy Bert Kellogg Collection of the North Olympic Library System
Remembering Franco Harris—Trails and Bicycling Advocate
June 15, 2023
Franco Harris, who died in December 2022 at the age of 72, became an important advocate for trails and cycling, in particular. And he did so as a member of the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC) Board of Directors from 1992 to 1997.
Franco Harris supported the trails and bicycling community in many ways, including as a board member for Rails-to-Trails Conservancy from 1992 to 1997, and as the owner of the Pittsburgh Power bike racing team in the early 1990s. | Photo courtesy Governor Tom Wolf | CC BY 2.0
Remembering the Chinese Forerunners Who Built the Northern Pacific
May 05, 2023
On Aug. 22, 1883, the final tracks of the Northern Pacific Railway were laid when a Chinese crew from the West met an Eastern crew of mostly Irish and Slavic workers near Inde­pendence Creek, Montana.
A Chinese railroad worker on the developing Northern Pacific line in 1905 | Photo courtesy University of Washington Libraries, Special Collections
Trail Moments | Adventure for All: Advocating for Accessible Outdoor Spaces
May 04, 2023
People with disabilities also like a spectrum of experiences and—especially with all this new technology—are capable of a wide variety.
Quinn Brett | Photo by Jimmy McAllan
Exploring America’s E-Bike Evolution
May 04, 2023
Now it’s younger families, maybe zero-car families that are using cargo e-bikes as a car replacement or commuters trying to get from A to B in the most efficient way they can.
Photo by Stephen Matera