Saving Lost Trails: 3 Areas Where WTA Will Focus in 2017
The hiking community has an opportunity this year to save three iconic places that represent the variety of challenges trails are facing across the state.
Trails around Washington are disappearing, due in large part to steep declines in funding for our public lands. To help tackle the problem, Washington Trails Association started the Lost Trails Found campaign at the end of 2015.
Since then, the Lost Trails Found campaign has been working toward the ambitious goal of rehabilitating at least five lost trails by 2020. In 2016, volunteers contributed hundreds of hours to lost trails like the North Fork Sullivan Trail in the Salmo-Priest Wilderness, the Klickitat Trail in Southwest Washington, the Six Ridge Trail on the Olympic Peninsula and others. The work will continue on these trails in 2017 and beyond.
Glacier Peak Wilderness & Milk Creek Trail
We will advocate for funding for a new Milk Creek bridge across the Suiattle River. The original bridge washed away in the floods of 2003, leaving the Milk Creek Trail inaccessible. The trail provides direct access to remote areas of the Pacific Crest Trail in Glacier Peak Wilderness.
Goat Rock Wilderness Access & Trails
We will continue our work to improve access to the popular Goat Rocks Wilderness, which is one of the most visited wilderness areas in the state. Miles of trails in the area are not easily accessible to hikers due to undermaintained or inaccessible roads. In addition, miles of trail that could provide high-quality access to the Goat Rocks Wilderness—and help disperse users—are in rough condition. WTA will focus our efforts on advocating for road maintenance funding for those roads that lead to trails in the wilderness. Additionally, our trail maintenance team will be at work improving lesser-used trails, such as Angry Mountain.
Pasayten Wilderness & Boundary Trail
We will work to improve trail conditions on a portion of the iconic, 80-mile Boundary Trail, which is part of the Pacific Northwest National Scenic Trail. The path traverses the length of the Pasayten Wilderness, ending at Ross Lake. Large portions of the western section of the trail need maintenance; tread has nearly disappeared in some areas.
While there is still significant work ahead, volunteers and trail advocates have an incredible opportunity to come together to preserve these icons for the benefit of hikers today and in future generations.
What is the "Lost Trails Found" initiative?
If trail conditions have ever stopped you in your tracks, you’ve experienced a “lost trail”
Trails are disappearing, due in large part to steep declines in recreation and trails budgets for our public lands. That's why started the Lost Trails Found campaign at the end of 2015.
With your help, WTA hopes to find our state’s “Lost Trails” and rehabilitate at least five of them by 2020.