By joining the effort to establish a Blue Trail, you can make a difference in your community and leave a proud legacy for the next generation. The process for creating Blue Trails is community driven and completely voluntary. Each community is distinct with different goals and opportunities, so each community must determine for itself the types of use, character, and activities for their Blue Trail.
As a landowner, you already know the importance of good stewardship. Your partnership is critical to the success of your community’s efforts to protect clean water and habitat, improve family-friendly recreation, and conserve your river.
Blue Trails benefit landowners
Why should I support a Blue Trail?
- Demonstrate your stewardship and be a leader in your community
- Help conserve clean water and wildlife for your family, your community, and future generations
- Provide safe places to fish, boat, picnic, walk or bike
- Increase your property value
- Strengthen a sense of connection to your river and hometown and preserve community character
- Provide an enjoyable place for people of all ages to experience the great outdoors and learn about the natural world
- Help grow the local economy by creating opportunities for new businesses
- Strengthen your community by bringing people together to plan, build, and use the Blue Trail
- Promote greater appreciation and protection of your community’s natural, cultural, historic and recreational resources
Common landowner questions
Many landowners support the idea of conserving rivers and improving family-friendly recreation but may have questions about property rights, liability, trash and other management issues.
Hear from landowners who have been involved in Blue Trail efforts
Landowners may have initial concerns about how a Blue Trail will effect their property rights. Blue Trails do not establish land use control on private lands or impose additional or more restrictive environmental regulations.
The process for creating Blue Trails is community driven and completely voluntary. Each community is distinct with different goals and opportunities, so each community must determine for itself the types of use, character, and activities for their Blue Trail. Landowners are a critical partner in this effort.
Landowners want to protect the value of their land. Fortunately, Blue Trails can bolster property values, improve overall appeal, and increase the natural beauty of communities.
In thinking about whether to support a Blue Trail along your land, it’s only natural for concerns about liability to surface. You may wonder, “what if someone gets hurt? Can I be sued? Does my insurance cover this?”
Fortunately, nearly every state has a recreational use law designed to limit liability for landowners who open their property for free public recreational use. To learn more about your state’s recreation use statute see: Resources: Liability.
Trespassing and trash
It is important for communities to educate Blue Trail users about the issue of trespassing and trash. Blue Trail users are directed through signs, maps, and printed material to respect private property and enter at designated access points, to stay on the Blue Trail, and to pack out their trash. Blue Trail users know that access via private lands is a privilege and that it is only through the generosity of private landowners that many outstanding outdoor opportunities exist.
Many landowners support the idea of improving family-friendly recreation and conserving the rivers in their community. However, initial concerns about property rights, liability, trash and other management issues are common.
Blue Trails provide a host of benefits: Provide a variety of close-to-home recreational opportunities for you, your family, and your community Provide safe places to fish, boat, picnic, walk or bike Enhance the quality of life Preserve community character and offer people a new way to discover the special places where you live. Provide an… Read more »
“The Eagle River Blue Trail will help families like mine more easily enjoy the river. Whether through tubing, casting a line, or just sitting in a lawn chair and watching the birds, a day on the river is good for everyone.” – Holly Loff, mother of two