Put Nature Back Into the Nature Trail
Nature trails offer park and site visitors the chance to immerse themselves in natural beauty and enjoy their surroundings. But the materials you use for those trails can make a difference. Trail materials can have an impact on accessibility, as well as the natural appearance of your site. Asphalt trails, for example, may provide access to people with disabilities, but they don't blend in well with the scenery. There are other options, though, that are easy to maintain and bring nature back to the nature trail.
Q: We would like to provide a trail, but we don't like the unnatural look of asphalt, and we're worried about the maintenance issues surrounding wood chips. Are there other options?
A: Wood chip trails look more natural, but can be a maintenance headache, with wood chips ending up where you don't want them. And asphalt is easier to maintain, but doesn't fit into the surroundings. You can find a poured-in-place wood fiber product that can be installed over a gravel base to create a natural-looking trail surface.
This surface won't wash out like normal loose-fill wood chips. At the same time, it is pervious, so it won't add to any stormwater runoff problems that non-pervious asphalt and concrete can cause.
Q: We are concerned about accessibility for our nature trails. Will a poured-in-place wood fiber trail be accessible for people of all abilities?
A: Everyone should have a chance to enjoy the scenery, and while asphalt and concrete are both accessible for those using wheelchairs and others with mobility issues, it's not the most attractive or natural-looking option. You can put nature back into the nature trail for all of your park users with a poured-in-place wood fiber trail. It is accessible to wheelchairs, and durable as well.
Even better, this sort of trail will please park visitors of all kinds. Wheelchair users will be glad to get off the road-like surfaces that are typically offered as an accessible option, but families with strollers will enjoy it too. And runners will appreciate the more forgiving surface.
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