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Adopt-A-Trail sponsors may choose from more than 3,000 miles of trails in the Wisconsin State Park System.


Wisconsin Adopt-A-Trail Program invites volunteers

photo of people with trash bags

Volunteers cleaning up the greenway


Individuals or groups may adopt a trail or segment of a trail by volunteering their time to help keep the trail clean and safe. It may be a state trail or a trail within a state park, forest or recreation area. As representatives of the Department of Natural Resources, Adopt-A-Trail sponsors can:

How to Adopt a Trail

Terms and Conditions

1. Sponsors are to be considered volunteers and not officers, employees, or agents of the State of Wisconsin, Department of Natural
Resources. Any injuries, claims, liabilities, suits or costs relating to this permit shall be the sole responsibility of the Sponsors.
2. The Sponsor agrees to indemnify and hold harmless the State of Wisconsin, Department of Natural Resources from any injury,
cost, suit, liability or award arising from the issuance or exercise of this permit, or because of any adverse effect upon any person
or property attributed to the works of the Sponsor.
3. Participants in the group agree to obey and abide by all laws and regulations relating to safety and such terms and conditions as
may be required by the Department for special conditions that may exist on a particular adopted trail segment.
4. Trail segments are assigned on a first come, first served basis. Sponsorship approvals are at the discretion of the property
5. A minimum of two miles of a linear railroad grade (rail-trail) trail must be adopted. Other trail sponsorships will be assigned based
on trail length. Trail segment sponsorships will not overlap. Each segment will be adopted by one sponsor at any given time.
Sponsors will not work beyond their assigned trail segment limits. These terms may be negotiated with the property manager.
6. Sponsors will participate in a minimum of three activity days per year. Activity dates are to be mutually agreeable to the Sponsors
and the property superintendent. Sponsors agree to work during daylight hours only.
7. Sponsors will provide appropriate training prior to any activity day to ensure the safety of all participants. Safety rules will be
reviewed each activity day before proceeding to the trail segment.
8. Sponsors will ensure there is one adult supervisor present for every 10 juveniles (under age 16).
9. The property superintendent will supply trash bags for litter pickup and instructions for disposal of litter filled bags. Recyclable
items must be separated from non-recyclables. The Sponsor may keep any recyclable materials.
10. Requests for additional supplies and materials should be directed to the property superintendent. Unused supplies and materials
furnished by the property may be retained by the Sponsors during the permit period, but must be returned to the property
superintendent at the end of the permit period.
11. Any "lost and found" items must be returned to the property superintendent prior to leaving the property.
12. Closed containers or items suspected to be hazardous will not be touched. Any items/situations found by the Sponsors which
need further attention from the property staff should be brought to the attention of the property superintendent.
13. Approved vehicle parking will be arranged with the property superintendent. Adopt-A-Trail volunteers are exempt from trail
pass/vehicle admission sticker requirements while participating in scheduled activity days. No motor vehicles will be allowed on
any trail unless specifically authorized by the property superintendent.
14. Adopt-A-Trail sponsors will be recognized by Department approved signs at trailheads or on property bulletin boards. The location
of these signs is at the discretion of the property superintendent. The Department reserves the right to refuse or revise acronyms
of group names when preparing signs.
15. A $20 fee to cover costs of producing and posting Adopt-A-Trail signs should be remitted via check with this form. Checks should
be made payable to "Wisconsin DNR," with "Adopt-A-Trail" written in the memo line. If the application is not accepted, the check
will be returned.
16. Partisan political groups (groups of people with common political opinions and purposes organized for gaining political influence,
governmental control and for directing government policies) shall not be permitted to participate in the Adopt-A-Trail program.
17. Additional Terms or Conditions

Adopt-A-Trail Application and Permit

For more information:

Department of Natural Resources
Wisconsin State Park System
P.O. Box 7921
Madison, WI 53707-7921
(608) 266-2181
(608) 267-2752 TTY
Web site:

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