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Trail Blazes


Trail blazing started back in the pioneering times. As they moved through the forest, they would strip a piece of bark off a tree and burn that part of the tree. The scar it left would ultimately kill the tree. Finally they discovered if they painted the trees, and touched it up every year, it would last alot longer.

Below is a sample of the standard arrangement of trail blazes. They are usually 2 inch X 6 inch blazes painted on trees. Cutover land and pastures are difficult to mark, look for blazes in the distance, such as painted rocks, or remnants of the trail itself. When the trail is not too obvious, the normal marking procedure is to position the blazes so that when you are standing at one you will always be able to see the next one. When the trail is unmistakable the blazes are farther apart. If you go about a quarter mile without seeing a blaze, retrace your steps until you find one, then check to see if you missed a turn. Most trails are marked for travel in both directions, so a glance over your shoulder once in a while to locate blazes in the opposite direction. On some highway and road crossings there is a sign erected telling you what trail you’re on and in the direction to go. At trail junctions, important features, or landmarks, signs often mark the trail route. Some may list mileages and or detailed information.




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