Whether you hike for the challenge, the friendship, or the solitude – at some point on your hike you feel it. The smile. The calm. The accomplishment. You are happy.

Now you have the opportunity to spread that happiness to the many hikers who come to enjoy Shenandoah National Park’s trails. Shenandoah’s 500 miles of trails need love to ensure they stay open and safe – and provide happiness to all who set foot on them.

Each year, the Trust adopts several trails that need work – from removing fallen trees to cutting back vegetation to fixing water bars so the trails don’t wash out with the rain. We need your help to keep these trails maintained, and keep our hikers happy!

What is the Happy Hiker Fund?

By contributing to the fund, you are supporting the park’s trails crews who work throughout the year to maintain your trails. In addition, you’re supporting a Trails Volunteer Coordinator who is able to leverage thousands of volunteer hours each year to keep up the park’s trails – a position the park did not have until Trust donors made it possible in 2015.

Why is maintaining trails important?

A well-maintained trail not only makes your hike easier and safer, it protects the sensitive habitats you enjoy looking at just off trail. If you come to a barrier on a trail, do you shrug, turn around and go home? No! You’re a hiker. You go around that barrier and keep trekking to your destination. That’s logical, but going off trail exposes you to potential dangers (from ticks to twisted ankles), and it disturbs the plants you have to walk through.

Donate to the Happy Hiker Fund today to celebrate what you love about hiking in Shenandoah, and protect the trails that make your next adventure possible.