Cape Cod National Seashore Volunteers Rehab Accessibility Features on Buttonbush Trail for National Public Lands Day 2018

A group of people stand in front of a sign that reads, "Buttonbush Trail."
Cape Cod National Seashore 2018 National Public Lands Day volunteer crew.

NPS/Sue Moynihan

Two people work on a hard-packed dirt trail.

NPS/Sue Moynihan

Cape Cod National Seashore visitors and neighbors who have low or no vision will have a higher quality experience when walking the Buttonbush Trail, thanks to a recent National Public Lands Day project.

The Buttonbush Trail is a .3 mile loop that meanders through forest and pond habitats. The trail was developed decades ago in collaboration with Perkins School for the Blind. It encourages touching, listening, and smelling, and it includes a guide rope, interpretive messaging in Braille, and alerts about steps and water bars to assist walkers who have low or no vision. The trail has been a model for local land managers and organizations seeking to provide an accessible trail experience.
Two people work on the surface of a hard-packed dirt trail.

NPS/Sue Moynihan

Over time, some of the accessible features had become deteriorated. Prior to sprucing up the trail, park staff consulted with Sight Loss Services, Inc. of Cape Cod and the Islands. Consultants recommended that the color of trail alerts be changed to provide more color contrast, and that the numerous water bars and steps be painted white to be more visible. In addition, volunteers replaced rotted guide posts and tactile markers that identify the locations of Braille signs.

Park staff are exploring options for future improvements to make the trail more universally accessible to people of all abilities, while retaining features that are friendly to visitors who have low or no vision.

For more information about the National Public Lands Day Buttonbush Trail project, contact Cape Cod National Seashore Chief of Interpretation and Cultural Resources Management Sue Moynihan.

Last updated: September 28, 2018