Open spaces clear to roam are not easy to find in some places. Fortunately, the closing of railroad tracks in the United States and other parts of the world provide an open line of cleared paths for the public to travel. This makes the use of rail trails a great idea for active people. 

Old rail lines, long forgotten and unused are turned into relaxing spaces for biking, horseback riding, walking, or cycling. Trails are long flat strips of land that goes for miles through communities, tree-lined areas, and historical properties. 

The Rail to trail organization began in 1986 with David Burwell and Peter Harnik. Saving these historical trails was the intent of the Railroad Revitalization and Regulatory Reform Act. 

Citizens donate money and effort into saving and developing rail trails for public use. This organization also provides pictures and maps of rail trails, so people have an easier time traveling from one trail to the next. 

Many cities are participating in the development of walking and biking tracks that provide a space for people to exercise. Visitors travel from every facet of the country people use rail trails to enjoy the beauty of the countryside. 

Cities without this facility are working to develop them. The United States has a federal infrastructure bill and transportation bills that bring rail trails to the front of public attention. 

Easy Spaces to Revamp: 
Rail trails are already available and ready for use. They will accommodate a large number of people, and the trails are up to continuous use. Directions are set with trails already mapped out. Trail networks link together across the nation benefiting millions spending time in the out of doors. 

Ride along trails by bike or walk. Stop and look at the sites when you wish. This is difficult to manage when riding in other modes of transportation. These trails turn a leisurely afternoon into a real adventure. Active people are healthier, and trails are an innovative way to get as many people moving as possible. Help your body function better with a great exercise routine in a great environment. 

Rail trails flow through the city and through the countryside. They are already mapped out, so the cost to the community is minimal. The Great Allegheny Passage has the honor of being one of the initial trails to be inducted into the “Rail trail hall of Fame” (RTC). 

Trails make moving through historic districts easy without conventional transportation. Bicycles, scooters, and foot traffic allows users to stop and picnic or casually walk with friends, a great way to enjoy the community environment. The output of funding does not distract from other neighborhood projects. 

There are at least 200 rail trails in the United States 

Trail Example
Longest Trails in the United States:

  • Cowboy Trail-Nebraska- 219 miles
  • Katy Trail State Park-Missouri-240 miles
  • Soo Line Trail-Northern Route- Minnesota 148 miles
  • John Wayne Pioneer Trail- Washington-229 miles

Conservation/ Environment: 
Using these spaces conserves the environment and lets the community enjoy the beauty of the area. Everyone can travel along these pathways. Pick a spot and travel the rails, I mean trails, Fred Meijer-Michigan, Robins Run Rail Trail- Pennsylvania (Oldest in the US), Hiawatha trail Milwaukee and Creeper or Capital Trail-Virginia. If you love getting seeing the fall foliage, a rail trail is a wonderful way to watch nature change colors. 

People using the trails bring a boost to the area’s economy. Businesses grow, or new groups become interested and relocate to the vicinity. 

Historic Preservation: 
Make an effort to enjoy trails in as many countries as possible. Trails are often in historical areas. Since railways were built historically in the beginning era of the country, the scenery, and location are most likely of very important historical spaces. 

Some lines swing through many picturesque areas of the community. A few trails offer sights of covered bridges, antique shops, and quaint cafes. Some places have rest stops and facilities. 

Searching for fabulous places to spend relaxation time is easier when there are rail trails in the neighborhood close to your home. This is one of the most affordable ways to exercise while getting out with friends and family. Bring your bike or walking shoes and prepare for spectacular scenery. 

Some of the Oldest Rail-Trails: 

  • Historical Railroad Tunnel Trail-Nevada
  • The D&L Trail-Pennsylvania
  • History Rail Trail County Park-Pennsylvania
  • East Bay Bike Path- Rhode Island
  • Schuylkill River Trail-Pennsylvania
  • White River Trail- Nebraska
  • Katy Trail State Park-Missouri
  • Blue River rail Trail-Kansas
  • Piscataquis Trail-New Hampshire
  • Historic Battlefield Trails-Texas

If circling the globe, check out trails in England, Bermuda, Australia, and New Zealand. There are other countries too with scenic trails to ride or walk. The extensive group of trails around the globe is awesome. Savor the beauty of the landscape while seeing environments impossible by car. 

Trails around the World: 
Rail Trail Spain
The Ruta del Carrilet is practically hill free, which makes it easy to ride or walk. It has everything you might imagine on a rail line, bridges, lakes, and old towns. The Via Verde del Tajuna is paved and runs on the outer area of Madrid; the country has many other rail trails. 

United Kingdom: 
Travel Downs Link in West Sussex/Surrey, The Camel Trail, or the 26 miles of Horn Sea Rail Trail in East Riding of Yorkshire. 

The Great Victorian Rail Trail- This trail moves through over 15 towns and covers 134 kilometers, no traffic- places to stay-small- close to suburbs but still close to nature, art, and local culture. 

The path along Singapore’s rail trail gives visitors a true view of nature. Walk this track line and enjoy a cluster of foliage that rustles through two countries. 

Whether your interest is beauty, history, or pure exercise, the long list of rail trails has something to accommodate everyone. In the past rail was king, therefore rails run all over the United States, although a few have become lost. However, many are being restored, these paths and great for getting out and traveling without the problem of facing traffic. 

One of these trails is the Yellowstone’s forgotten trails. This is one of the harder trails. However, most are renovated and ready for travel. So, pick your state or country and get moving.