Steps to Build a Blue Trail: Manage

Create an Adopt-a-Blue Trail Program

Back cover photo - 2011 Bedford County Stream Sweep - Juniata River, PA - Bob WebbAdopt-A-Blue Trail and similar programs are great ways for your community to help monitor and enhance your Blue Trail. Anyone with an interest in the outdoors can participate. School and youth groups, scout troops, church, community and service organizations, businesses, families, and individuals are all examples of volunteers who are helping maintain and preserve Blue Trails. Program volunteers can assist in managing and maintaining blue trail systems and provide safe, enjoyable access to the outdoors. Activities may include:

  • Keeping launch sites free of debris
  • Pruning small limbs from the launch site area (only for safety purposes)
  • Maintaining launch sites, parking lots, campsite, and signage
  • Cleaning up
  • Reporting erosion problems, illegal activities, vandalism, and safety issues

An Adopt-A-Blue Trail program provides an opportunity for people to be actively involved in conservation. Helping to maintain and enhance existing Blue Trails improves the resource for all to enjoy. The effort brings trail and nature enthusiasts closer to the environment and their community. Volunteers enjoy the time they spend outdoors and the personal satisfaction they gain through volunteering on a conservation trail.

Typically, a trail or trail section is adopted for a period of one or two years, renewable annually thereafter upon approval by the program manager. This agreement usually can be terminated at any time by the volunteer or program manager. Typically, volunteers are asked to visit the adopted trail or trail section at least 4 times a year (approximately once every 3 months). Volunteers choose the days and time they visit the trail. After each visit, volunteers send a written report to the program manager so that they can keep track of volunteer efforts.

The program manager provides volunteers with information and instructions on maintaining the trail to meet management guidelines. Usually, volunteers are asked to provide their own maintenance tools, but with prior notice loaner tools may be available.

For more information on recruiting and training volunteers see Manage a Blue Trail: Recruit Volunteers.