HORSE riders will have greater access to NSW national parks under a plan announced by the state government.NSW Environment Minister Robyn Parker said eight priority regions have been identified for new horse riding opportunities.
Regional advisory committees will ensure community views are taken into account when deciding on sustainable horse riding trails.
The regions are the Far South Coast, Southern Ranges, Blue Mountains, Metropolitan North East, Central Coast Hunter Ranges, Lower North Coast the Northern Tablelands and Northern Rivers.
In some cases, the plans of management for national parks will have to be amended.
Ms Parker said the National Parks and Wildlife Service had allocated $150,000 to help deliver new horse riding opportunities between now and June 2013.
She released the Strategic Directions for Horse Riding in National Parks at the Perimeter horse trail in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park today.
"It is about balancing recreational opportunities so people can better understand and appreciate our wonderful national parks and reserves and at the same time ensuring the unique values of our parks remain protected," she said in a statement.
Access to areas of high environmental sensitivity, such as critical habitats, wetlands, swamps and alpine areas would be avoided, Ms Parker said.
More than 200 submissions from individuals, horse riding organisations and conservation groups had been taken into account in devising the strategy, she said.
Better route markings, track upgrades and places to tether horses would also be part of the strategy.
Ms Parker said the strategy also provided for limited horse riding pilot programs in five wilderness locations in the Kosciuszko, Curracabundi, Monga, Deua, Wadbilliga and Mummel Gulf National Parks.