July 30, 2009

The Complete America’s Great Trails Act

American Hiking Society constantly monitors legislation that could enhance or protect the hiking experience. A new bill, HR 1912 - the Complete America’s Great Trails Act - has the potential to significantly benefit some of the most spectacular trails in America. This proposed legislation would grant a tax credit to private landowners who provide conservation easements to certified National Scenic Trails – resulting in a low-cost incentive for willing landowners to donate easements that would increase trail connectivity. This means that private landowners have a new incentive to allow hikers to pass through their property, and trails get a guaranteed corridor that protects the connectivity and continuity of the hiking experience for years to come!

American Hiking supports HR 1912 and applauds Rep. Connolly (D-VA) and Rep. Lummis (R-WY) for introducing this forward-thinking legislation. We also applaud Rep. Blumenauer (D-OR) and Rep. Bono-Mack (R-CA), co-chairs of the Congressional Trails Caucus, and Reps. Kind (D-WI), Massa (D-NY), McMahon (D-NY), Lance (R-NJ), Polis (D-Co), Boccieri (D-OH), Pierluisi (D-RC-PR), for their original co-sponsorship of this important legislation.

American Hiking advocates for changes in policies that provide our partners with as many tools as possible to protect and manage our nation’s great trails. Thus, we work closely with regional and local organizations that protect, maintain and promote the various elements of America’s National Trails System. We also partner with Congress and the federal land management agencies charged with managing and administering our trail resources.

American Hiking has championed the protection and enhancement of America’s National Trails System since our founding in 1976. Our National Trails System consists of more than 7,000 authorized miles of National Scenic Trails, more than 36,000 miles of National Historic Trail routes, and more than 1,000 registered National Recreation Trails.

Take Action to urge your Representative to co-sponsor HR 1912.

Read the full text of HR 1912, and read the Dear Colleague Letter being circulated by Reps. Connolly and Lummis.

July 15, 2009

NG Atlas wins British award

By David Miller
Senior Editor, NG Maps

The "National Geographic Visual Atlas of the World" won the prestigious John C. Bartholomew Award at this year’s British Cartographic Society meeting near London. Rebecca Hill, international marketing director at National Geographic’s London office, accepted the award for the Book Publishing Group, which produced the atlas in 2008.

The award, sponsored by the Bartholomew family and HarperCollins, recognizes “originality and excellence in the field of thematic cartography with emphasis on effective communication of the intended theme or themes.” Now in its 30th year, the award includes an engraved crystal trophy and award certificate. Among the many entries, the "Visual Atlas of the World" was singled out for special praise from the judges: “This atlas lives up to its title, and through a large series of well-compiled, beautifully designed thematic maps presents a dramatic picture of today’s world and the issues it faces.”

The "Visual Atlas of the World," with 416 pages, 350 maps and more than 600 photographs, satellite images and illustrations, reveals a common planetary heritage by highlighting World Heritage sites.

“The atlas blends two of National Geographic bests—state-of-the-art cartography and brilliant photography, which together tell compelling stories across the globe," said Carl Mehler, director of maps and project editor for the atlas.

"The collective efforts, talent and innovation of the atlas staff made this project materialize into a uniquely diverse cartographic collection. We're honored and delighted to receive this recognition from the British Cartographic Society,” he continued.

Find more information on the atlas at http://shop.nationalgeographic.com/product/244/4461/120.html