We Need Trails, on Washington Trails Day and Every Day!
This Washington Trails Day — our state's official holiday for trails — we asked our community why they need trails. Here's what you told us.
On August 1, Washington hikers and outdoors lovers celebrated Washington Trails Day, our state's official holiday for trails. This year, our holiday looked a little different. Instead of speaking to hikers and recreationists, gathering signatures on postcards, we found another way to demonstrate the strength of the outdoor community to policymakers.
This Washington Trails Day was all about learning from our community about what trails mean to all of you.
Why do you need trails?
This year, we asked hikers to tell us why you needed trails. More than 800 hikers donated, took action and sent messages on social media about what trails mean to them, especially right now. WTA members, staffers and legislators even chipped in with their own inspiring messages.
We heard so many heartwarming messages — including messages from legislators (see video below) — from all our community about why trails are special to them. These are only a few of them. It’s no secret that to all of us, trails aren’t just good for people, economies and the environment, they’re a must-have.
Stories make an impact
Congress recently passed the Great American Outdoors Act, but we’re going to need help from hikers in helping put that critical funding to work here on Washington’s trails. Messages from hikers like you can make the difference on that issue, and on many of the issues we work on that impact hikers and trails. Stories illustrate to local and federal lawmakers what their constituents value, which in turn helps them to prioritize these values as they make important budgeting and legislative decisions.
In January, the state legislature will work on a new biannual budget, and U.S. Congress is currently working to pass new infrastructure programs. These items have significant impacts on funding for trails and projects on public lands. These decisions made by our lawmakers will be key to ensuring trails are maintained and sustainably built for the future.
Take action: why do you need trails?
Want to tell your story and tell us why you need trails? Take our action below!