A Day in the Life of the Trail Conference

January 02, 2018
New York-New Jersey Trail Conference


A Day in the Life of the Trail Conference


Who Is the Trail Conference?

When a handful of passionate hikers decided to build the first public trail across Harriman State Park in 1920, they didn’t blaze a path for their own recreation—they kicked off the beginnings of a trail revolution. This movement formed the New York-New Jersey Trail Conference, which in turn has grown into an organization that stewards more than 2,150 miles of trails and the lands they traverse. Today, nearly every trail experience in this region has been made possible through the hard work of a Trail Conference volunteer.

Who are these volunteers?

Some have lovingly described them as “trail gnomes,” people who quietly head into the woods, work swiftly, and leave no evidence of their efforts beyond safe, sustainable trails and improved green space. It’s a special kind of trail magic, to be sure. But there is no magic wand. This magic is in the passion of these special individuals who give so much of themselves for the sake of helping others connect with nature.

There is no better way to describe what the Trail Conference does than by showcasing who the Trail Conference is. And so, here is a “day in the life” snapshot of the organization, featuring some of these incredible people and their efforts to ensure that the trails and natural areas we share are sustainable and accessible for all to enjoy, for generations to come.

Both on and off the trail, every day of the year, there is a member of the Trail Conference family working hard to make your next adventure possible. From Manhattan to Albany, the Delaware Water Gap to the Taconics and beyond, right now, Trail Conference volunteers and staff are working to improve access to outdoor opportunities for all and protect the belief that the joys of nature belong to everyone.

Find the full feature here.