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Hikers, Flex your Muscles

Posted by Jonathan Guzzo at Aug 09, 2010 01:45 PM |
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In this year's Endangered Trails Guide, WTA identified several ways to take action for each hike.

It's hard to be optimistic about the state of our trails sometimes. News of declining agency budgets, incursions by off-road vehicles and heavy storms that damage our favorite places form a steady drumbeat that can leave hikers feeling a little overwhelmed.

Fortunately, there's an antidote. Taking action to preserve the places you love not only lifts your mood, but it has real and concrete results. The fact is that hikers are powerful, not just as an organization like WTA, but each of us as individuals. Better yet, there are a great many ways for us to show our power.

That's why, in this year's Endangered Trails Guide, we identified several ways to take action for each threatened hike that made the list.

Take, for instance, our number one Endangered Trail - Milk Creek in the Darrington Ranger District. You can call Senators Murray and Cantwell and ask them to increase appropriated dollars to reopen the Suiattle River Road and repair the trail. And if you click on the "Save My Trail" link for the Milk Creek Trail, you'll find even more ways to dig in - calling the Ranger District and asking them to prioritize this hike, telling friends about your commitment to the trail, and signing up for the Trail Action Network to get updates and alerts on how to save Milk Creek and other special places.

We can all spare a few moments to take action and flex our advocacy muscles. We're strong as a community of hikers - there are a lot of us in Washington state, after all - and if we each do just a few things to save a hike we love, those actions will add up to big change for our trails on the horizon.