I'm in the process of naming some routes and roads in my medieval fantasy themed world, and I want to specify routes that could only be managed on foot. I'm tempted to say trails, but since every body walked so much back then I'm not sure if they'd even make the distinction; I just imagine it would be roads and paths. Any thoughts on this?...
The first use reported in the Oxford English Dictionary for "trail" with the meaning "A path or track worn by the passage of persons travelling in a wild or uninhabited region; a beaten track, a rude path. (Chiefly U.S. and Canadian; also New Zealand and Australian.) Cf. nature trail n. at nature n. Compounds 4b." is from 1807:
1807 P. Gass Jrnls. 125 We proceeded down the river through dreadful narrows, where the rocks were in some places breast high, and no path or trail of any kind.
The word "trail" is much older, but with different meanings. In the 15th century it was used for the train of a robe or other garment.
Of course, the lack of any reports of the "path or track" meaning before 1807 does not prove it was not used earlier with that meaning, but it seems very unlikely to date back to the middle ages with no recorded uses.
The word "path" with meaning "A way or track formed by the continued treading of pedestrians or animals, rather than one deliberately planned and made; a narrow unmade and (usually) unenclosed way that people on foot can use." dates back to Old English, and has reported uses in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. It seems to be just what you want.