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F247 Trails

F247.1 General

This section contains the scoping requirements for trails. The terms trail and trailhead are defined in F106.5. A trail is a pedestrian route developed primarily for outdoor recreational purposes. A pedestrian route developed primarily to connect elements, spaces, and facilities within a site is not a trail. A trailhead is an outdoor space that is designated by an entity responsible for administering or maintaining a trail to serve as an access point to the trail. The junction of two or more trails or the undeveloped junction of a trail and a road is not a trailhead.

Where a trail is designed for use by hikers or pedestrians and directly connects to a trailhead or another trail that substantially meets the technical requirements for trails in 1017, the section requires the trail to comply with the technical requirements for trails in 1017. The Federal Trail Data Standards classify trails by their designed use and managed use.8 A trail has only one designed use that determines the design, construction, and maintenance parameters for the trail. A trail can have more than one managed use based on a management decision to allow other uses on the trails. Trails that have a designed use for hikers or pedestrians are required to comply with the technical requirements for trails in 1017. Trails that have a designed use for other than hikers or pedestrians are not required to comply with the technical requirements for trails in 1017.

A trail system may include a series of connecting trails. Only trails that directly connect to a trailhead or another trail that substantially meets the technical requirement for trails in 1017 are required to comply with the technical requirements for trails in 1017.

 8 The Federal Trail Data Standards are available at: http://www.fgdc.gov/standards/projects/FGDC-standards-projects/trail-data-standard/.

F247.2 Existing Trails

Where the original design, function, or purpose of an existing trail is changed and the altered portion of the trail directly connects to a trailhead or another trail that substantially meets the technical requirements for trails in 1017, this section requires the altered portion of the trail to comply with the technical requirements for trails in 1017. Routine or periodic maintenance activities that are performed to return an existing trail to the condition to which the trail was originally designed are not required to comply with the technical requirements for trails in 1017.

F247.3 Trailheads

This section requires at least 20 percent, but not less than one, of each type of outdoor constructed feature provided within trailheads to comply with the applicable technical requirements in 1011. The section also requires at least one outdoor recreation access route to connect accessible parking spaces or other site arrival points serving the trailhead; the starting point of the trail; and accessible elements, spaces, and facilities provided within the trailhead.

F247.4 Trail Facilities

This section requires camping facilities, picnic facilities, and viewing areas provided on trails to comply with the applicable scoping requirements for the facilities in F244 through F246, except for the scoping requirements for outdoor recreation access routes. The facilities are required to comply with the applicable scoping requirements regardless of whether the trail complies with the technical requirements for trails in 1017.

The section requires routes that connect trails complying with the technical requirements for trails in 1017 to camping facilities, picnic facilities, viewing areas, pit toilets, and accessible elements within the facilities to comply with the technical requirements for trails in 1017. Routes that connect trails that do not comply with the technical requirements for trails in 1017 to these facilities and accessible elements provided within the facilities are not required to comply with the technical requirements for trails in 1017.

F247.5 Outdoor Constructed Features

This section requires at least 20 percent, but not less than one, of each type of outdoor constructed feature provided at each location on trails, other than within facilities provided on trails, to comply with the applicable technical requirements in 1011.

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