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The American Discovery Trail is designed to serve as the backbone of a nationwide network of trails, and we need your help to make it an official part of the National Trails System.

Bipartisan legislation to make this happen—the National Discovery Trails Act or H.R. 2661—has been introduced in Congress by Rep. Jeff Fortenberry of Nebraska with Rep. Jared Huffman of California as lead co-sponsor.

Becoming a part of the National Trails System is a multi-step process. In the first step, Congress passed a law directing the National Park Service to conduct a feasibility and desirability study to determine if the ADT qualified to become a part of the National Trails System.

This study recommended that the ADT be added to the National Trails System as the first of a new category of long-distance trails to be known as National Discovery Trails. Legislation to implement this recommendation, known as the National Discovery Trails Act, has been introduced in Congress several times. The bill has passed the Senate unanimously three times, but each time it stalled in committees in the House.

It’s time to try again! H.R. 2661 creates a new category of trails known as National Discovery Trails, and designates the American Discovery Trail as the first of these trails.

For this legislation to pass, we need to demonstrate as much grass roots support as we can. You can help by asking your member of Congress to co-sponsor the legislation.

Contacting your member of Congress or Senator is easy. Simply point your browser to (last name of your member of Congress) You can write a message from that website—and you can click on one of the links below for ideas on what to say.

Don’t know who your member of Congress is? Email Krista at with your address, and she can find out for you.