100. Wilkinson Trail intro

A side view of a building with glass window sides, a cannon in the foreground, and a grassy lawn. Trees and a partly cloudy sky in the background.

Track 1: Welcome –Visitor Center

The trail you are about to embark on is the 4.2 mile Wilkinson Trail. The start of the Wilkinson Trail is a brown kiosk behind the Visitor Center at the end of the lawn. 

Trail markers and informational stations on the trail are thick grey plastic posts. Each trail marker is labeled "Wilkinson Trail," while each informational station is labeled with a letter of the alphabet, A through N. 

Each of these stations has a corresponding audio track; start listening to each track at its corresponding station and continue to enjoy it as you hike to the next station. 

When you arrive at station C, there is a fork in the trail. Take the path to the right. This will allow you walk the rest of the trail.

For a shorter version of the trail, roughly 2 miles, hike to Station F and take the left turn for the Liaison Trail shortcut, marked with brown thin posts. That will take you to Station N, where you will turn left to complete the shortened hike. We will remind you again when you arrive at Station F. 

Please help preserve the natural and historic resources of Saratoga National Historical Park by leaving plants, wildlife and historic objects undisturbed. There is a restroom near trail Station C located at Tour Road Stop 7. 

Welcome to the Wilkinson Trail! 
"At Saratoga, the British campaign that was intended to crush America’s rebellion ended instead in a surrender that changed the history of the world." --Richard Ketchum, author 

While walking this historic land you will see woods, open fields, hills and streams. You will also see cannons and white marker posts tracing long-removed fortifications from the Revolutionary War battles fought here. On these grounds in 1777, determined American soldiers defeated a world class British army invading their homeland. 

This stunning victory spurred international allies to openly provide supplies and armed forces to the new Untied States, making it possible for America to ultimately win its independence. What you don’t see was arguably the most important element of the events that unfolded...the men, women and children on both sides of the conflict, some of whom were willing to make the supreme sacrifice for causes they believed in. 

The Battles of Saratoga were replete with a colorful cast of characters, political intrigue, sacrifice, and human drama. Walking the trail you will retrace the same paths where soldiers marched to and from battle, where determined souls overcame overwhelming odds, and where America’s fight for freedom breathed new life. 

Listen for the echoes of years gone by...let this trail be a journey into the past, and perhaps you may glimpse scenes of 18th-century America and the human stories and events surrounding the Battles of Saratoga.