Trails for everyone, forever

Home Our Work The Trail Next Door Pilot Projects

Pilot Projects

Take a look at urban trail pilot projects.


With The Trail Next Door, we're exploring how WTA can best benefit people looking to access urban green spaces and trails; from encouraging people to explore and invest in neighborhood trails to expanding the types of volunteer opportunities we offer.

We are listening to partner organizations and trying out new strategies for improving access and availability of urban trails. Learn more about them below!


Public transportation

There are nearly 200 hike entries for "trails next door" in the WTA Hiking Guide, and throughout 2020 we'll be working to add new trails, improve existing information and add public transit directions when possible to these entries. Many urban parks have large trail systems with multiple routes, and we've heard from partner organizations and city hikers is that it can be hard to figure out the best one to take when exploring a new city park. You can help other nearby hikers by writing a trip report for your next urban hike and tagging #trailnextdoor. 

Volunteer trail work to improve urban trails

Trail volunteer at Schmitz Preserve Park by Britt Le

We're excited to roll up our sleeves and run volunteer work parties in urban parks across the state. Initially, the majority of these will be  concentrated in King and Pierce Counties. We are trying to focus our work on neighborhoods and areas that have less access to green spaces and can serve large populations of people for the greatest impact. In addition, we're also experimenting with shorter half day work parties in select areas of the state that will give new volunteers the opportunity to join us in their neighborhood park without the need for a lengthy time investment. Keep an eye on our volunteer sign up page for an upcoming work party in your area!

see what else we're working on

We Fix 'Em, You Hike 'Em: 8 Trails WTA Has Already Refreshed in 2020

Jan 21, 2020

WTA's trail maintenance program has been busy this month. We kicked off 2020 by breaking ground on brand new trails and continuing work on dozens of other trails. We even had a ribbon-cutting — broadening a trail network trail that hikers already loved.

Read More

New Year, New State Legislative Session: Our Big Goals for 2020 and How You Can Help

Jan 13, 2020

The 2020 legislative session is now in session. Learn about WTA's budget priorities for the upcoming year.

Read More

Teaching on Trail: Custom Workshops For Educators of Youth

Jan 06, 2020

Through workshops, a free gear library and trip funding, the OLT program provides customized training for educators who want to take youth groups outside.

Read More

I Picked Up 80 Pounds of Trail Trash in a Year. Here's What I Learned

Dec 30, 2019

If you're looking for hiking resolutions for 2020, here's what I learned from a year of collecting 80 lbs of light sabers, orange peels and water bottles.

Read More

10 Things WTA is Thankful For

Nov 27, 2019

When Washington spins into winter, the dark days can be challenging to endure. Fewer hours of daylight make it hard to get outside, but we believe it's a good time to reflect on how much we have to be thankful for: pikas, toilets, and a community who cares about each other.

Read More

Trail Champions in the House: Meet Five Leading Women in Washington's Legislature

Nov 06, 2019

This fall, we hiked with five Washington state representatives on trails in their home districts. We recently walked and talked outdoor recreation, physical health and economic benefits with Representatives Entenman, Jinkins, Leavitt, Robinson and Ryu.

Read More