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View of Lake Superior
View of Lake Superior from Michigan's Upper Peninsula along the North Country National Scenic Trail
Shutterstock / Travis J. Camp

North Country National Scenic Trail

The North Country National Scenic Trail is the longest in the National Trails System, stretching 4,800 miles across eight states – Vermont, New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and North Dakota – and traversing forests and farmlands, remote terrain, and communities.

Designated as a National Scenic Trail in 1980, the North Country Trail begins in Middlebury, Vermont and ends in Lake Sakakawea State Park in North Dakota, connecting both the Long Trail and the Appalachian Trail with the Lewis and Clark Trail. The trail was recognized as an official unit of the National Park Service in 2023 and is managed in partnership with federal, state, and local agencies. It’s built and maintained primarily by volunteers from the North Country Trail Association and its partners.

The National Park Foundation is supporting the North Country Trail by providing funds for a standardized chainsaw training program and the necessary personal protective equipment for volunteers across the trail’s 4,800 miles to ensure the trail is safe and accessible for users. It also works closely with the trail’s primary partner, the North Country Trail Association, which has recently received capacity building grants for the creation of a Trail Protection program that will enable NCTA to secure access to and protect the landscape of the trail, as well as the development of a campaign plan to increase NCTA’s ability to sustain its maintenance, protection, and promotion of the trail long into the future.

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