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The next American Trails International Trails Symposium will be held in Portland, Oregon in 2015.

arrow Read more about the next Symposium in Portland May 17-20, 2015


Map of Arizona The 21st American Trails International Trails Symposium in Arizona

Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation - Radisson Hotel & Conference Center
Near Fountain Hills, Mesa, and Scottsdale, Arizona

Comments we have received report a highly successful American Trails International Trails Symposium! There were attendees from every State except Nebraska, and additional countries represented included Australia, Canada, China, Columbia, France, Japan, New Zealand, South Africa, South Korea, the United Kingdom! In all, there were 520 attendees, including over 150 speakers and presenters. Among them were 118 generous sponsors, who provided 103 booths in the Exhibit Hall. And, we’re grateful to the Arizona Planning Team and for the more than 150 incredible volunteers from Arizona and around the country!

arrow Download the 40-page Symposium Program with all the great events and activities (pdf 3.1 mb)

arrow See biographies of Core Track & Concurrent Session presenters (pdf 289 kb)

arrow See winners of the 2013 National Trails Awards sponsored by American Trails


arrow Thank you to our current sponsors & exhibitors!

Photo of horses on trail

Photo by Scottsdale CVB


arrow See complete schedule at a glance


Saturday, April 13

• Featured Workshops

Cyclovia Fountain Hills (10 a.m. - 5 p.m.) followed by free concert - see map of Cyclovia event locations
Sunday, April 14

• Mobile Workshops
• Featured Workshops
• Trail Tools Expo
• Exhibit Hall opens with Building Public Awareness Event, free and open to the public (2:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.)
• Happy Trails Hour in Exhibit Hall, for attendees only, (5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.)
• Symposium officially begins with Opening Reception (in the Exhibit Hall), for attendees only (6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.)

Monday, April 15

• Opening Keynote Luncheon
• Core Tracks and Concurrent Sessions
• “Trails Rock” Party
• Exhibit Hall Open (8 a.m. – 6 p.m.)

Tuesday, April 16

• Core Tracks and Concurrent Sessions
• Mobile Workshops and Featured Workshops
• National Trails Awards Banquet
• Exhibit Hall Open (10 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.)
Wednesday, April 17

• Core Tracks and Concurrent Sessions
• Mobile Workshops and Featured Workshops
• Closing Keynote Luncheon (official closing of Symposium)
Thursday, April 18

• Featured Workshops


WHY you should attend the Symposium

The biennial American Trails International Trails Symposium (ITS) is your best opportunity to share ideas and learn new techniques in trail planning, development, and management. Dozens of speakers and keynote presenters will join us from the trails community across America and beyond our borders to address the broad range of trail issues:

Photo of runner in desert

Photo by Scottsdale CVB


Welcome INTERNATIONAL speakers, keynotes, and attendees

American Trails is thrilled to host its first International Trails Symposium in Arizon— an international tourist destination! We want to reach across the oceans to harness our combined wisdom to support and encourage the collective dedication to trail initiatives around the world. The program will feature international sessions, which will provide alternative ways of approaching challenges in the trails world and will provide excellent networking opportunities for our attendees. We are stronger and more effective together, and the Symposium is a perfect way for the international trails community to share success stories and lessons learned.

Here is a sampling of confirmed countries to date: Australia, Canada, China, Colombia, France, Japan, South Africa, South Korea, United Kingdom.


LOCATION of the 2013 Symposium

arrow See map at right for Symposium location in the east Phoenix area


More about Arizona trails:

The 2013 Symposium theme is "Trails Lead Everywhere," celebrating the remarkable role of trails worldwide. Throughout time, they have united and guided humans across the globe. Trails were the foundation of our communication network and continue to be an essential component of our personal and professional experiences and relationships. As one of our greatest assets trails enable us to explore, travel, and savor the world’s natural wonders, from the highest mountains to the deepest canyons and all the vast open spaces in between. They are the best way to see nature’s hidden treasures, the cleanest way to commute, and the easiest way to encourage kids to adopt healthy lifestyles. Trails are the ribbons that connect us, lead us, and expand our horizons.

Hosts of the 21st American Trails International Trails Symposium:

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"We are pleased to hold our 21st American Trails International Trails Symposium at the elegant Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation Resort Destination! Besides the endless beauty of the northern-most part of the Sonoran Desert; the towering, blooming saguaro; flowering ocotillo; jumping cholla; agave; lovely palo verde; soaring hawks; mountain lion tracks; dramatic mountains; and endless sunshine— we are excited to show off the bountiful trail activities within close proximity for all trail types including hiking, bicycling, equestrian, OHV, mountain bicycling, and water. The Fountain Hills, Mesa, and Scottsdale communities are excited for our arrival and look forward to serving the trails community in the Valley of the Sun." -- Pam Gluck, Executive Director, American Trails


Photo of hikers and cactus

McDowell Mountain Regional Park in
Scottsdale (photo by Stuart Macdonald)

Arizona Travel Tips


The Arizona Republic's weekly trail description ~

Arizona Hiking Tips ~

Visiting Tribal Lands ~

FAQs ~

Summer travel guide ~

arrow Download more books and resources for Arizona from Maricopa County Library District: Our State, Our Story - Celebrating 100 years of Arizona (pdf 618 kb)


Previous Symposium locations

To learn more about recent Symposiums, please visit the webpages we created for each of them:


Is your organization celebrating an anniversary?

We love to celebrate important milestones for trail organizations and events at the American Trails International Symposiums! Email us at and let us know by February 1 and we will recognize your anniversary at the 21st National Trails Awards Celebration Banquet, as well as on the American Trails website.


Creative Crossings

Submit your projects for our Creative Crossings Photo Gallery! During the Symposium, you will have an opportunity to share the beauty of your trail crossings or bridges in the Creative Crossings Photo Gallery. Recent years have seen the construction of some strikingly beautiful and innovative trail bridge designs. American Trails will showcase those bridges and other trail crossings in a photo gallery in the Exhibit Hall and on the American Trails website. Submit your Creative Crossing photos to the American Trails office by February 15. Email them to along with the name of the bridge, the trail name, the location, and the photo credit.


The 2010 Symposium generated an estimated 1.8 million dollars for the Chattanooga community!

Contact for sponsorships and exhibitors: Candace Mitchell at or (530) 547-2060

arrow See photos and information from past Symposium Exhibit Halls

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Thank You Symposium Sponsors!




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