Most new hikers bypassed club membership and were therefore inexperienced with the realities of trail work or the policies that made the trails possible. The misleading simplicity of trails obscured the significant investment of volunteer time, energy, and wealth provided by traditional hiking clubs. Millions of hikers passed over trails with little concern for how they were created or by whom. They approached trails as consumers—willing to pay taxes for trails and perhaps mail a membership fee to an environmental organization—but not to make hiking membership or trail work an important part of their lives.
— SILAS CHAMBERLIN, On the Trail: A History of American Hiking, 2016
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