Topics!

From the Organizers

Topics listed are for information only. A program with itinerary will be released in April 2017.

Very soon we will be releasing our Call for Papers and Presenter Application. We encourage you to let us know if you are available to talk to a topic.

Topics and content may change, but we are working on this content and its delivery.

Thanks for your interest and support.

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The Best Trails Are Planned Trails

Whether you are working in remote locations or complex urban environments, trails require planning, for land use, activity, substrates, surface, and awareness. This session examines the complex matrix of inputs planners need to consider to deliver the best trail product.
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Towards National Trail Networks

There are a variety of activity groups that use trails, but not these trails are single use. Many are multi-use yet users dream of a national trail dedicated to their activity. Many trails are shared and this session explores the who, why, what and where of national trail networks.
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Cycling Trails and Routes

The relationship between cycling and trails is a complex one. A large volume of trail users are cyclists and many trails accommodate their use. This session will speak to the promotion of trail cycling for both on road and off road networks as well as address best practices, so that a comprehensive set of strategies are discussed across many different cycling trail disciplines.
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Partnerships that Make Trails Work

In a world of limited resources communities are innovative in funding, managing, developing and operating trails. What occurs is usually a portfolio response with pockets of support from different sources. This occurs through leaders that know how to network. This session talks about creating networks and partnerships that support trails.
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Water Trails

The water is all about paddling routes! Canoe, kayak and a variety of other water activities are helping to shape the marketable water trail destinations and experiences all over North America. Join our panel discussion for more information on how to develop, manage and capture the water as a trail tourism product.
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Environmental Improvement Greenways

Climate change is a reality, trails and greenways are a hedge against environmental change for the worse. Tree planting, and the greening of trails assist in removing CO2 from the air. Join us as our panelists discuss the reality of climate change and how trails offer a buffer against this change.
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ontario-bill-of-rights-800w

Learn by doing! Trails are great for mentoring.

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Promotion

This session focuses on getting your message about your trails out to the trail using public and the trail educated consumer. Everyone loves the rated trail – but are those ratings and stories accurate? Our experts will help you with tools and techniques to assess, and then tell stories about your trails.
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Long Distance Trail Development

Rail to Trail conversions are a mainstay of trails in the USA. In many Canadian trails jurisdictions, the conversion from rail to trail is complicated by local landowner opposition, costs of upkeep, and a lack of willingness on railways to part with the railbed for a reasonable cost. Join us as our panel discusses the rail to trail inventory, its issues and how to make rails to trails work in Canada.
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Trail Assessment and Risk Management

Having the public using infrastructure that is largely unsupervised requires extra diligence so that the trail is unsupervised ready. By doing so, it reduces your risk exposure by offering such a free and continuously open recreation opportunity. This session and our national experts will detail steps you can take to reduce risk while providing the types of trail experiences visitors and the public request.
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The Trails Tourism Economy

Many communities turn to trails tourism, guiding and cycling tours as an alternate revenue source when primary industry leaves town. What is the economic model for trails? Can we have one that works for all activities? Let’s discuss the options as we move towards a funding formula for trails that works.
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dogs pulling sled Canada

Let the dogs out and sled in Canada!

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Economic Development through Trails

First Nations Peoples + Traditional lands were the first providers of trails in Canada. More and more economic development for First Nations sees a flexible nation to nation development pathway. This session will discuss gains First Nation territories have made by increasing economic development through traditional land use.
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Education

There are any number of trails educational programs you can take, whether provided by an accredited educational institution or your provincial user group, this session will develop an understanding and appreciation of the need and use of trail specific education programs and how you can achieve career advancement through specialized trails education.
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Regulations and Laws that Support Trails

In Canada, there are many jurisdictions that have passed legislation supporting trail operations. Getting legislation and regulation is not easy as there are many competing priorities for government support. Come and listen to pro-trail legislators and regulators as they discuss how they influenced policy change for trails.
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Nature Deficit Disorder – Reducing Disability through Activity

It is clear, that with escalating obesity and declining physical activity rates, in both adults and youth, that there is a cultural bias against the outdoors and physical activity. Hear our panel of experts talk to the impacts of Nature Deficit Disorder; the meaning behind the term and how some areas are developing NDD Teams; to combat the negative societal impacts from lack of activity.
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Land Management and Trails

There are many trails across the country that see more than one use. Many jurisdiction’s investment in trail infrastructure happen because public investors want to achieve maximum public benefit = mixed uses. Mixed use is problematic from traffic control, engineering, user conflict, amenities and other investment needs. Join us for a land manager’s discussion about the complexity of having mixed use trails.
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Parks and Trails

Trails exist in parks of all types. Private parks use them as an attraction, public municipal parks include them, national parks provide for adventure trails tourism, provincial parks as linear parks. Where does your use fit in the mix? How do we move between different jurisdictions and how can all be more accepting of the greatest variety of uses?
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Trails First Aid – Helping Trails in Crisis by Overcoming Community Resistance

There are many trails that have been secured through intensive community support, partner investment, grant support and fundraising. Unfortunately, these investments to start the trail don’t transition to sustained funding. This many trail systems at risk because a process pulls support. This session talks about trail systems in crisis, those requiring a national response. Let’s talk about Trails First Aid, what it looks like, who it could help and how.

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Snowmobiling is winter fun! Ride a trail today!

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Funding

Most Canadians use trails without a thought to their development, maintenance, structural needs or refurbishment. Many trails operate on precarious terms. Maintenance requires annual funding, but priorities and communities need change. This session discusses fund sources, and how we can develop funding strategies to sustain trails so they are here in 100 years.
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Volunteer Appreciation

Many national trails organizations, such as, the TCT, CCSO and others, take great pride when talking about how their trails are built from the ground up – by volunteers. Who are these people? Why do they do what they do? As they age how are they being replaced? This session will look at mechanisms to honour, value and renew your volunteers.
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Towards Accessible Communities

This session examines inclusion in the trail landscape – the accessibility community. A definite player in the outdoors, persons looking to use their assistive equipment don’t want anything more than an opportunity to get out and use trails. How do we assist? How do you assess your place for suitability, applicability and usability? Let’s get together so you can satisfy this most exciting trail customer!
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Motorized Trails

ATV and motorized vehicles have a place on trails. Balancing motorized trail use with other motorized and non-motorized uses, is what leaders of this sector do. Professional driver and rider training is an important function of national motorized groups. This session will offer a better understanding of the motorized community, effective rider management as well as the positive and proactive people engaged in motorized trail activity.
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National Trails Strategy Session

There are over 250,000 kilometers of trails, but there is no comprehensive national plan or process for ensuring trails growth and development takes place in a coordinated way. This session engages sector thought leaders in defining policy elements, sector alignments, activity symmetries and resource options to facilitate a National Trail Strategy.

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Art and Science of Trails

Explore key elements of trail planning and design for trail sustainability. Good trail design involves a range of sciences to provide for a sustainable route. Great trail design involves interpreting the landscape to maximize its features improving the user experience. Learn to design ecologically sustainable trails fun for a variety of user groups to travel, and respectful of the surrounding landscape!
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national-parks-pass

In 2017 Parks Canada Park entrance is free! Get your Discovery Pass today.

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Parks Canada Education Program

Join Canada’s largest land manager and their trail design, build and management experts as they train Parks Canada staffs in the latest trail techniques. Skills learned will ensure you know how to provide quality trails and exceptional experiences. Thank you Parks Canada for opening your staff training program to Trailhead Canada attendees.
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Trail Tech

Trails tech is everywhere! Check the internet and you’ll find a full range of trail stories posted using the latest in high tech gadgetry. Join this session to find out what the lead tech producers of cameras, maps and aerial drones, are producing. Learn more about the applicability of technology, equipment uses and applicability on trails.
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Social Impact of Trails

Trails are part of the environmental, eco-tourism, land use and accessibility movements here, and around the world. Many corporations such as Mountain Equipment Co-op, Arctery’x and Patagonia, while competitive, work towards social change. Trails are one area where they influence the environment, and the environment influences back. Recently, these companies have protested land loss, protection change and environmental degradation. Join our panel of corporate leaders as they talk about their motivation and achieving corporate altruism through trails.
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Youth and Trails

Trails are about communities and the people that live in them. Trailhead Canada recognizes youth and the youth movement is an important part to trail revitalization, use and excitement! Youth organizations will be presenting on their trail and community involvement. Earth Rangers, Scouts Canada and Katimavik will be present to talk about the outdoors and transformative trail power.
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