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Public-images-osm logo.svg highway = trail
Using this tag is discouraged, use highway=path, highway=footway, highway=cycleway, or highway=bridleway instead. Edit this description in the wiki page. Edit this description in the data item.
Group: highways
Used on these elements
should not be used on nodesshould not be used on waysshould not be used on areasshould not be used on relations (except multipolygon relations)
Status: deprecated

exclamation mark

This feature has been labeled as deprecated. The recommended replacement is: highway=path, highway=footway, highway=cycleway, or highway=bridleway.
The reason is documented in Deprecated features. You are still free to continue to use or interpret this tag as you see fit since OpenStreetMap does not have “banned features”.
Under no circumstances should you (semi-)automatically change “deprecated” tags to something else in the database on a large scale without conforming to the automated edits code of conduct. Any such change will be reverted.

For cross-country trails, hiking trails, paths going up to a mountain etc. Trails are unpaved, unprepared and often narrow. Roots and rocks are not moved away. Wear from the users of the trail keep the vegetation away. Trail may or may not be well visible on ground, see trail_visibility=*.

Cycle route planners should not assume that a highway=trail is cycleable, with the possible exception if the user has indicated that he wants MTB routes. Take a look at mtb:scale=*.

New proposal

A new proposal is underway: Proposed features/Trail (new proposal)