Recreational Trails Program
Recreational trails provide benefits for all of us that include: public health, economic, transportation, and local community pride and identity.The Recreational Trails Program (RTP) provides funds to develop and maintain recreational trails and trail-related facilities in Montana.
Montana State Parks administers the Recreational Trails Program (RTP), a federally funded grants program that supports Montana’s trails.
The RTP funds come from the Federal Highway Trust Fund, and represent a portion of the motor fuel excise tax collected from nonhighway recreational fuel use: fuel used for off-highway recreation by snowmobiles, all-terrain vehicles, off-highway motorcycles, and off-highway light trucks.
In July 2012, Congress passed and the President signed the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21). MAP-21 is a two-year transportation bill providing funding for federal highway, transit, alternative transportation, and safety programs through September 30, 2014. The Federal Highway Administration has now released guidance on the Transportation Alternatives Program. MAP-21 has been extended through May, 2015.
RTP funding is completely separate from all Montana State Park revenues, camping fees, and related funding sources.
RTP applicants can include federal, tribal, state, county or city agencies, private associations and clubs. Examples of eligible projects include: urban trail development, basic front and backcountry trail maintenance, restoration of areas damaged by trail use, development of trailside facilities, and educational and safety projects related to trails.
Montana State Parks collaborates with the State Trails Advisory Committee to review the RTP applicants each year. In 2012, the RTP moved to an online WebGrants application format at www.fundingmt.org.
2015 RTP Grant Proposals
- 2015 RTP Grant Proposals ( 69 KB)
Public Comment Sought on Proposed 2015 Trail Grant Applications
Montana State Parks is seeking public comment on Recreational Trails Program (RTP) grant applications for the 2015 grant cycle which closed on March 6. The public comment period is open through Friday, May 8 at 5pm.
Public Comments can be submitted:
- by email,
- or by mail to:
- Montana State Parks, Trails Program
- P.O. Box 200701
- Helena, MT 59620-0701
2015 Grant Application Period is Closed
The deadline for this year’s cycle of funding has passed. It was was March 6, 2015. The next funding cycle will open in December, 2015.
2014 RTP Grantee List
- Recreational Trails Program Glossary of Terms ( 34.80 KB)
- Direct and Indirect Costs Guidelines ( 85 KB)
- Snowmobile & Cross-Country Ski Clubs Grooming Information ( 55 KB)
Application Forms & Guidelines
In 2012, the RTP moved to an online WebGrants application format at fundingmt.org
- Application Guidelines ( 86 KB)
- Recreational Trails Program Scoring Criteria ( 38.42 KB)
- RTP Eligible Projects ( 45.08 KB)
- RTP Set–Aside Grant Guidelines ( 18.KB)
- Big Grant Guidelines ( 38 KB)
- Environmental Review Tiering Form ( 37 KB)
- MEPA/NEPA Tiering Form ( 23 KB)