I'm a big fan and proponent of rail trails. I love biking and running on them. And if you ask me, we don't have nearly enough of these gems. One of the biggest pluses about these trails is that by far many of them are within urban and suburban environments. For millions of people that means that there is no need to travel far to get a little hiking, biking and running in. And for millions of obese Americans you now have accessible car free areas to go for a walk to shed those excess pounds. As Americans grows fatter and the country gets more and more populated, rail trails will only grow even more in importance. I envision for the future a system of interlocking trails from coast to coast-through all 50 states intertwined with greenbelts and preserves. For my Washington friends pick up a copy of this month's Northwest Runner to read my feature story on some of the state's newest rail trails. For my New Hampshire friends rejoice in the fact that the Derry Rail Trail is getting closer to being paved and tied into the Windham Rail Trail, a wonderful asset in my hometown. For everyone from the Pacific to the Atlantic get involved in your community to help develop new trails. I look forward to taking a run, walk, hike or bike on them some day.
(photos- Heather on the Windham Rail Trail, Windham NH: Heather on the Golden Tiger Rail Trail in Republic, WA)