“Imagine what’s possible with a trail that connects the country…”
That’s how the Rails-to-Trails Conversancy (RTC) introduces their new project the Great American Rail-Trail.
The idea is that a 4,000-mile bike trail would connect the state of Washington to Washington D.C. going through more than 125 rail-trails, greenways and other paths in twelve states. The connected states would be Washington, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Maryland and finally D.C.
According to RTC’s website, Washington state’s Palouse to Cascades State Park Trail would make up more than 200 miles of the 4,000-mile bike trail. The eastern end of the trail is near the Idaho border and western end is in the Cascade foothills, about 35 miles from downtown Seattle. The Palouse to Cascades State Park Trail goes through the two-mile long Snoqualmie Tunnel.
The RTC says on their website that the ambitious project was first dreamed about by the organization’s co-founder David Burwell more than 30 years ago. He says on the page that he hopes his dream can become realized.
“One day, you could go across this entire country… on flat wife, off-road paths,” he said on the website. “I want rail-trails to be ‘America’s Main Street.’”
The route is currently more than 50 percent complete. On May 8 the nonprofit plans to reveal the cross-country preferred route of the Great American Rail-Trail.