Rutherford County's network of hiking trails, greenways, and blueways are the result of a collaborative effort between a team of trail partners working to build and maintain these outdoor spaces. Each partner has a crucial role to play in making Rutherford County's trails safe and enjoyable for residents and visitors.
Rutherford Bound invests in local trails -- greenways, blueways, and hiking trails -- that make the county an even better place to live, work, and play. By funding the construction and improvement of area trails, Rutherford Bound is improving the quality of life for residents and actively attracting more visitors to the area. Rutherford Bound has also formed the Rutherford County Trails Collaborative, a group of stakeholders with the goal of guiding trail infrastructure development in the county. By providing a framework of organization, leadership, and teamwork, Rutherford Bound is moving outdoor recreation and trail construction forward in Rutherford County.
Conservancies help to secure land where trails are built and work to oversee the maintenance of existing trails. They have a hand in the design and layout of new trails and contract with trail builders for construction. Foothills Conservancy and Conserving Carolina are instrumental in trail building, preservation, and upkeep in Rutherford County. Because it is their primary mission to preserve and protect land, water, and wildlife, these conservancy groups are valuable trail partners.
State Parks offer protected areas of land where new trails can be built and are the site of numerous existing trails for visitors to enjoy. Combined, Chimney Rock State Park and South Mountain State Park oversee, upkeep, and maintain more than 63 miles of hiking trails for some 800,000 visitors each year.
Towns and Municipalities in Rutherford County advocate for new trails for residents and visitors to enjoy. They are also responsible for the long-term maintenance of trails within their borders. During the past seven years, towns in Rutherford County have come together like never before to create new greenways, and hiking & biking trails. These towns know that, if they invest in trails and outdoor spaces, their communities will reap an outstanding economic return. In addition to creating more attractive communities, every $1 spent on trail construction returns $1.72 annually to local businesses.
Rutherford Outdoor Coalition (ROC) promotes outdoor recreation across Rutherford County by building and developing new trails, and protecting existing ones. ROC advocates for expanding trail opportunities and mobilizes volunteers to do trail work. By organizing local recreation groups, holding monthly meetings, and circulating information, ROC is an instrumental trail partner in Rutherford County. Additionally, the Carolina Climbers Coalition is a valuable partner in building and maintaining climbing routes and the necessary access trails.
Working together, Rutherford Bound and each of these trail partners are improving the quality of life for residents, attracting visitors to the area, and enhancing the outdoor experience that already surrounds us in Rutherford County.