Foothills National Recreation Trail
The completion of the spine of the Foothills National Recreational Trail was a long time in coming. it was a small brand of visionary citizens who more than 32 years saw enormous potential in converting miles of abandoned railroad right of way in Puyallup Valley into a safe wide paved recreational trail for people of all ages and abilities, That was the beginning of our Foothills Rails-t-Trails Coalition, an all-volunteer, non-profit group that worked hard to persuade elected county officials to launch the trail project and keep construction going despite financial, legal and political hurdles.
The gig long-awaited day was May 19th when public officials and trail supporters gathered in South Prairie for a joyous occasion – the Pierce County Parks & Recreation dedication for the newly completed “missing link” between South Prairie and Buckley. It took a village to make it happen: Funding partners included Pierce County; Federal highways Administration; Washington Department of Transportation; Puget Sound Regional Council; Rural Town Centers and Corridors Gran’ Washington Recreation and Conservation Office WWRP trail grant; and matching donations from the Foothills Rails-to-Trails Coalition; Puyallup Watershed Initiative Active Transportation Community of Interest; and towns of Buckley and South Prairie.
There are plans to add yet more miles to the trail and connect with Tacoma and King County. We want to see a full network of trails connecting Pierce County communities. Ultimately, we hope for a trail to Mount Rainier National Park to Commencement Bay – a fabulous Mountain to Sound Trail, or “Tahoma to Tacoma” if you prefer,