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The American Discovery Trail is designed to serve as the backbone of a nationwide network of trails. Our goal is to make it an official part of the National Trails System.

Becoming a part of the National Trails System is a multi-step process. In the first step, Congress passed a law directing the National Park Service to conduct a feasibility and desirability study to determine if the ADT qualified to become a part of the National Trails System.

This study recommended that the ADT be added to the National Trails System as the first of a new category of long-distance trails to be known as National Discovery Trails. Legislation to implement this recommendation, known as the National Discovery Trails Act, has been introduced in Congress several times. The bill has passed the Senate unanimously three times, but each time it stalled in committees in the House.

In 2014 legislation to make this happen—the National Discovery Trails Act was introduced in both the Congress and the Senate. Neither bill made it to a vote, but hopefully new legislation will be introduced this year.

For this legislation to pass, we need to demonstrate as much grass roots support as we can. You can help by asking your member of Congress or your state Senator to co-sponsor the legislation. We'll let you know when we need you to do this.

For more information about the ADT Society, please email us at

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