Ten Points of Recreational Trail Development
The following is a brief outline for the development of recreational trails. Additional details are available from the Oneida County Biking and Walking TrailsCouncil, Inc.
- Clarify purpose of trail. For example: link communities with safe pedestrian trails, enhance recreation, increase “shoulder season” tourism, provide opportunities for healthy activity, and improve local economy.
- Determine community support. Identify groups of people affected including local businesses, property owners, bikers, hikers, birders, schools, parents, and snowmobile enthusiasts.
- Develop route options. Consider separate trails, designated roadways, existing snowmobile trails, and other multiple purpose trails.
- Discuss trail development with property owners near possible routes.
- Determine style of trail and type of construction best suited to selected route. For example: if a trail is to be used by snowmobiles in the winter a gravel or limestone surface would be preferable to asphalt.
- Consider maintenance issues and funding related to the trail.
- Develop estimated costs of construction and maintenance.
- Determine availability of funds from governmental agencies and private sources. Note: grant applications to the DNR administered programs such as Wisconsin Stewardship Program and the National Recreational Trails Act Program are due May 1.
- Set schedule of completion and implement the plan.
- Enjoy the trail!
Additional information about grant funding and trail development is available from the WI Department of Natural Resources, the WI Department of Transportation, or the Oneida County UW-Extension.
Prepared by Tom Rulseh, Oneida County Biking and Walking Trails Council, Inc.