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Trail Restoration, Conservation and Education: How a Hobby Became a Commitment

A Pastime Becomes a Movement

Don't Waste Our Trails began in the summer of 2022 with a simple yet profound commitment from Lonny Winegar, a Utah local who decided to make a difference. After selling his business, Lonny found himself with time to pursue his passion for the outdoors, setting a goal to hike daily. He was drawn to Adams Canyon, a gem among Utah trails, where he quickly noticed signs of neglect and erosion, including dangerously exposed rebar. His initial act of capping these hazards sparked a larger idea — large scale and lasting trail restoration.

"I knew that to make a significant impact on the trails, I needed to involve others. The hiking community is full of active altruistic people who have a real sense of respect and reverence for the mountains. I knew that if I provided an opportunity for hikers to give back to the trail, they'd show up. And they did."

Determined to improve conditions on the trail, Lonny began picking up trash and organizing community clean-up projects to tackle issues like erosion, litter, and vandalism. The enthusiasm and support from the county and fellow volunteers were overwhelming, leading to several successful restoration efforts.

It was clear that this endeavor shouldn't be a one-time project but a sustained movement. This realization led Lonny to establish Don't Waste Our Trails, an outdoor lifestyle brand that embodies the spirit of responsible hiking and outdoor stewardship.

Trail Conservation Through Commerce

The core mission of Don't Waste Our Trails is to educate hikers on responsible trail use and to spearhead restoration projects across Utah's trails. To fund these initiatives, the brand utilizes sales from its range of branded merchandise. Offering T-shirts, hoodies and hats, each item sold directly supports trail maintenance and educational campaigns. This business model allows hikers to not only contribute financially to the cause but also to wear their support proudly, spreading the word about trail conservation.

The revenue from the merchandise is instrumental in covering the costs of materials and equipment needed for ongoing trail projects. By purchasing a piece of Don't Waste Our Trails gear, customers are essentially investing in the future health and accessibility of the trails they love. It's a practical and effective way to ensure that the trails remain safe and beautiful for everyone to enjoy.

Growth Through Community

As Don't Waste Our Trails continues to grow, so does its impact. What started as one man's mission has evolved into a community-driven effort, with hikers across Utah and beyond coming together to support and participate in trail restoration. The brand is more than just merchandise; it's a symbol of commitment to preserving the natural environment and ensuring that hiking remains a sustainable and enjoyable activity for all.

So next time you hit the trails, consider how you can contribute to their longevity and beauty — perhaps starting with supporting a brand that's dedicated to just that.

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