Field Notes
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
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Trails at Rydell National Wildlife Refuge Earn National Recognition
Midwest Region, June 3, 2005
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Secretary of the Interior Gale Norton announced the designation of the refuge trails at Rydell National Wildlife Refuge near Erskine, Minn., as a National Recreation Trail (NRT), on June 3. The Rydell Refuge Trail, a seven-mile back country trail system, was among 37 new trails in 23 states to be designated National Recreation Trails by Secretary Norton. The trail showcases Sundew Bog and wildlife habitats that developed from the ?fire shadow? effects of Maple Lake. This ecosystem represents a unique transitional zone between Prairie Parkland of the Red River Valley and the Eastern Broadleaf Forests. This handicapped-accessible trail system allows for year-round outdoor activities, including hiking, biking, and cross-country skiing.

?A lot of credit for this designation goes to the Friends of Rydell NWR who have worked hard over the years to obtain grants and labor to develop the trails and make them a part of the quality outdoor experience here on the refuge,? said Rydell Refuge Manager Dave Bennett. The Rydell Refuge Trail is now recognized as part of America's national system of trails and joins more than 900 other trails nationwide. New designations are announced annually by the Secretary of the Interior as part of the nationwide celebration of National Trails Day, the first Saturday in June, and recognized at the biannual National Trails Symposium.

National Recreation Trails provide for numerous outdoor recreation activities in a variety of urban, rural and remote areas, ranging from less than a mile to 485 miles in length on federal, state, municipal, and privately owned lands. National Recreation Trails are designated in response to an application from the trail's managing agency or organization by the Secretary of Interior or the Secretary of Agriculture, and recognize exemplary trails of local and regional significance. More information about Rydell National Wildlife Refuge is available on the web at: http://refuges.fws.gov/profiles/index.cfm?id=32583

Information on the National Recreation Trails program is available at: http://www.americantrails.org/nationalrecreationtrails/ .

Contact Info: Larry Dean, 612-713-5312, Larry_Dean@fws.gov
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