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Metro Parks Newsroom

Jefferson Memorial Forest Celebrates National Trails Day by Opening Yost Ridge Trail

Wednesday May 26, 2010

Jefferson Memorial Forest will celebrate the opening of a new hiking trail which begins at the Welcome Center at 9 a.m. on Saturday, June 5, to commemorate National Trails Day.

This new trail, officially called the “Yost Ridge Trail” is 1.2 miles long and connects the Welcome Center to the Mitchell Hill Lake Trail in the Horine Reservation.

The trail was made possible by a $5,000 “Save the Trails” grant awarded to the Louisville Metro Parks Foundation by Nature Valley and the American Hiking Society. This trail is being constructed according to the latest standards for sustainable trail design to reduce problems such as soil erosion. The trail offers wonderful views of downtown Louisville and surrounding knob topography.

“The Yost Ridge Trail is a wonderful addition to the Forest’s trail system and a wonderful example of the hard work the staff and volunteers have put in on this project,” Mayor Jerry Abramson said. “It’s because of them that hikers will be able to enjoy this trail for years to come.”

The final stage of this project, to be complete this fall, will extend the Yost Ridge Trail over to the Forest’s Paul Yost Recreation Area. At that time, all 35 miles of the Forest’s hiking trails will be accessible from the Forest Welcome Center. These trail segments are crucial components of the Forest’s recent master plan, which is focused in large part on improving the experience of visitors to the Forest.

The public is invited to the National Trails Day Celebration, which begins at 9 a.m. at the Welcome Center, 11311 Mitchell Hill Road, in Fairdale. Parking is available at and across from the welcome center. Local dignitaries will be present for the grand opening celebration and refreshments will be provided. In addition, through a partnership with the Trail Store, members of Backpacker Magazine’s “Get Out More Tour”, will be on hand to lead hikers along the new trail (more information available at

Jefferson Forest staff dedicated the second Saturday of each month throughout 2010 as a volunteer work day to work specifically on this project. Typical volunteer activities on the trail including clearing vegetation from the trail corridor, and finish work on the tread, back-slope and out-slope.

Volunteers interested in participating on any of the work days should call 502/380-1753 for information. Work days for this project start at 9 a.m. at the Welcome Center on the second Saturday of each month. Additional dates can be arranged for groups and organizations.

About the Jefferson Memorial Forest
The 6,218 acre Jefferson Memorial Forest, a woodland tribute to those Kentucky veterans who have served our nation during times of war, is Jefferson County’s largest nature preserve and the largest municipal urban forest in the nation. The Forest is the flagship of Metro Parks’ Natural Areas Division, which is entrusted with providing stewardship, nature-based educational programming, and outdoor recreation within nearly 7,000 acres of forest, meadow, and riparian habitats across Louisville Metro. Jefferson Memorial Forest offers a full range of recreational amenities, including weekend education and adventure programs, hiking trails, camping, fishing, horseback riding trails and picnic areas. For more information or to volunteer, go to

About the Louisville Metro Parks Foundation
The Louisville Metro Parks Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that works with Metro Parks to raise funds and resources to preserve, protect, promote and improve Louisville’s recreational opportunities, and supports the mission of Metro Parks by coordinating financial and volunteer assets. Since its incorporation in late 2005, the Foundation has helped achieve more than $2.5 million in improvements to Louisville’s parks, conservation areas and recreation programs.

About Save the Trails™
National park trails need continual upkeep and preservation because of high occupancy and various environmental elements, such as fire, erosion and catastrophic storms, which deteriorate the landscape. Nature Valley has also funded the Save the Trails program with the Student Conservation Association for four consecutive years, committing a total of $400,000 to trail restoration this year. For more information about Save the Trails and this year’s winning organizations, visit

About American Hiking Society
National Trails Day is sponsored and promoted by the American Hiking Society, and each year thousands of volunteers take part in hundreds of trail projects throughout the United States. Founded in 1976, American Hiking Society is the only national, recreation-based nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting and protecting America's hiking trails, their surrounding natural areas and the hiking experience. Since its inception in 1998, the National Trails Fund has granted nearly $340,000 to 89 different trail projects across the United States. Community preservation efforts include land acquisition, constituency building campaigns and a variety of trail work projects. With more than 200,000 miles of trails in the United States, the National Trails Fund is the only national private grants program that helps trail-maintaining organizations build and improve hiking trails and galvanize volunteers to ensure long-term trail sustainability.

To learn more about American Hiking Society, visit or call (301) 565-6704.

About Nature Valley®
Nature Valley® created the granola bar category in 1975 and brings great taste to active consumers looking for wholesome snacks. Nature Valley consists of five great-tasting granola bar lines: Crunchy Granola Bars, Chewy Trail Mix Bars, Yogurt Granola Bars, Sweet & Salty Nut Granola Bars and Roasted Nut Crunch Bars. Nature Valley is also the Official Natural Energy Bar of the PGA TOUR, the United States Ski and Snowboarding Association, Nature Valley NASTAR, Association of Volleyball Professionals, Cross Country Ski Areas Association, Vail Resorts, Aspen Resorts, Myrtle Beach Golf Holiday and the Warren Miller Film Tour. In addition, Nature Valley is a sponsor of the Student Conservation Association and the Nature Valley Grand Prix.
*Nature Valley® is a registered trademark of General Mills, Inc.