MARK SIREK Administrator Posts: 317
edited May 2023 in ROUTES & TRAILS

We recently received this press release from the Partnership for the National Trails System about a new free resource called Native Lands, National Trails. Read on below to learn more about the project, and visit the map linked at the bottom to see the historical native regions that some of the most iconic trails in the country travel through. It’s a great tool that will give more meaning to the geography and landscapes these routes traverse, enriching any backpacking trip you take.


Trails are guides across vast and diverse landscapes for many histories, people, animals, and beyond. They flow through the territories and hard borders that can oftentimes reinforce narrow concepts of community. Native Lands, National Trails aims to support what trails inherently do best: creating connections and relationships. 

Native Lands, National Trails (NLNT)—a newly launched resource created by the Partnership for the National Trails System (PNTS)—provides a starting point for meaningful collaboration between trail organizations, Tribal Nations, and Indigenous communities. By utilizing this resource, organizations have the opportunity to go beyond providing verbal land acknowledgements by cultivating partnership and collaboration with Indigenous communities along National Scenic and Historic Trails. 

NLNT includes an interactive GIS map hosted through Esri that serves as an educational tool and resource for understanding and navigating Ancestral Indigenous territories throughout the National Trails System (NTS). A recorded webinar series is also included, which provides foundational information about engagement with indigenous communities on trails. Finally, NLNT provides a resource guide that can be used to locate resources that trail organizations and Indigenous communities have created. 

Many of the National Historic and Scenic Trails were used by Indigenous cultures that continue to have ancestral ties to the current landscapes. The intent of this map is to provide a broad perspective of just how many communities the National Trails System crosses and to start crucial conversations about impacts, engagement and inclusivity of their stories. 

This resource was created by Kiana Etsate-Gasytewa with PNTS in collaboration with the Bureau of Land Management, Native Land Digital and Ancestral Lands Conservation Corps. Data on Indigenous territories is courtesy of Native Land Digital, and National Trails System data is provided by the National Parks Service. These resources can be utilized by trail and Indigenous communities alike, ans is completely free to use. 

You can learn more and use this free resource RIGHT HERE