2016 RTP Achievement Awards

Award-Winning Trail and Greenway Projects


Winners have been announced for the 2016 "Annual Achievement Awards" in recognition of outstanding use of Recreational Trails Program (RTP) funds. The awards ceremony hosted by the Coalition for Recreational Trails was held in Washington, D.C. on June 8, 2016 at the U.S. House of Representatives offices. The awards are part of annual efforts by national trails and outdoor recreation organizations to promote the importance of RTP funding to States across America.

photo of people with award

Tyler Wilson, Director of Government Relations, The Corps Network (center)
with Marianne Fowler, CRT Co-Chair and Duane Taylor, CRT Vice Chair




Utah Conservation Corps Bike Crew

Youth Conservation/Service Corps and Community Outreach

During the summer of 2015 the Utah Conservation Corps created the nation's first-ever pedal-powered bike crew that used cargo bicycles as their sole means of transportation. During seven weeks the four-person UCC Bike Crew improved 2.22 miles of trail at Utah State Parks sites.

The trails improved included the Water’s Edge Wallsburg Trail at Deer Creek State Park and the Mormon Pioneer Trail at East Canyon State Park. The four crew members, based in Salt Lake City, not only provided much-needed labor to improve these trails at Utah State Parks sites with limited budgets but rode over 350 miles to/from project sites instead of using a motor vehicle.


photo of bicycle riders on highway

The Utah Conservation Corps crew on its way to work


The UCC secured a $20,000 Recreational Trails Program grant for this project in late 2014. The UCC supplied $20,000 in matching funds through value of volunteer hours, waived indirect costs from its sponsor Utah State University, and additional support from Black Diamond, Clif Bar, Hammer Nutrition, Keen, and Pro Bar for additional food, boots, and camping supplies.

In addition to empowering four young adults that joined the UCC Bike Crew from around the country, this crew was a demonstration for other conservation corps and public land management agencies to reduce carbon footprint and improve air quality while completing conservation projects.

photo of people working on dirt trail

UCC crew at work on the trails


These four corpsmembers not only received traditional UCC training in conservation project skills, chainsaw use and safety, and wilderness medicine, but also received training in bicycle maintenance and safe route planning. All four UCC Bike Crew members completed their AmeriCorps terms of service and had a challenging and empowering experience during the project.

Crew leader Jessica Gibbons said of the experience of biking to project sites that “overall it went well. It was a bonding experience when you were riding because it was a difficult process of riding and just getting to the worksite. But we were doing it together.” The crew has recently been honored with a Project of the Year Award from The Corps Network.

The UCC gained positive press and support for the project starting with a 6/3/2015 kickoff event  in Salt Lake City https://www.corpsnetwork.org/utah-conservation-corps-kicks-bike-crew.


photo of man with loaded bicycle

UCC Bike Crew Member Benjamin Harken with his gear and bike


In addition crew leader Jessica Gibbons was featured in the 21st Century Conservation Service Corps blog http://21csc.org/2015/06/11/faces-of-the-21st-century-conservation-service-corps-jessica-gibbons-of-utah-conservation-corps/

See the story by 90.9 FM KRCL www.krcl.org/the-r-o-i-on-uccs-bike-crew/.

The Bike Crew also received positive press from UCC’s sponsoring organization, Utah State University http://www.usu.edu/today/index.cfm?id=55055

The crew’s efforts are also detailed in a 5-minute video at www.youtube.com/watch?v=y05f-Bv4Cfc.


For more information:

Sean Damitz, Utah Conservation Corps, 7205 Old Main, Logan UT 84322-7205
sean.damitz@usu.edu - (435) 770-6104

The Recreational Trails Program

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