long-distance paths and national trails

long-distance paths and national trails
Walking, taking long walks in the countryside for pleasure, is a popular hobby in Britain, and many people go walking in national parks and other country areas at weekends. Walking is also called rambling (BrE) or hiking. Many routes go along public footpaths. These are rights of way (= paths across private land that the public has a legal right to use) which must be kept open and which are marked on Ordnance Survey maps.
  Keen walkers may walk one of Britain’s many long-distance footpaths during their holiday/vacation. Leaflets and books describe the paths and the facilities available nearby. People doing long-distance walks camp out overnight or stay in bed-and-breakfast accommodation in nearby villages.
  The first long-distance footpath, the Pennine Way, which goes from Edale in Derbyshire to the Scottish border, was established in 1965 and was immediately popular. Other long-distance routes include the Pembrokeshire Coast Path, Offa’s Dyke Path, the South-west Coast Path, and the West Highland Way. The use of the paths by many thousands of walkers, and now also people riding mountain bikes, has led to concern about vegetation being damaged or destroyed, and wide scars (= areas of bare rock or soil) being left on hillsides.
  About half of the land of the US is open to the public, but there is no system equivalent to British public footpaths across private land. There are 19 national trails as well as many other paths and trails in national parks and other areas of natural beauty. Because the national trails are very long, few people walk their entire length.
  The US National Park Service is in charge of the official trails and works with local organizations to keep them in good condition. There are 8 national scenic trails of which the Appalachian Trail is the best known and most popular. It was completed in 1937 and became an official trail in 1969. It begins at Mount Katahdin in Maine and ends at Springer Mountain in Georgia, running more than 2 000 miles (3 218 kilometres) and through 12 states over the tops of the Appalachian Mountains. Other national trails include the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail running from the Canadian border over the Rocky Mountains south to the Mexican border, and the Natchez Trace from Mississippi through Alabama to Tennessee. The Trace is in fact a road for cars and bicycles, but people can walk on some of the old Native-American paths from which it was developed.
  There are 11 national historic trails, including the Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail from Illinois to Utah which connects places associated with the American Revolution. The Trail of Tears runs 2 000 miles (3 200 kilometres) on land and over water following the route used by Cherokee Native Americans when they were forced to move west.
  As well as the national trails there are many thousands of trails which are the responsibility of the states.

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Universalium. 2010.

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