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Current Week's Information

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on May 2, 2021 at 5:23:51 am


MRATC Activities and Information, Week of May 2 – 8, 2021




On Friday May 7th we will be emptying Hurricane Privy. This should be the last of the bin privies to be emptied in 2021.  We’ll be meeting at 9am at Dickey Gap and then driving to Barton Gap. Please send an e-mail to mratcinfo@gmail.com if you can help.



Jim completed his first week as our Ridgerunner and submitted his weekly report on hiker encounters and trail maintenance issues. See attached. If there are club members who would like to receive reports from Jim each week, email:  jbaum@appalachiantrail.org.


(If the list of interested folks gets too long, we may send out the reports as Sunday email attachments.)



Stay tuned!  Group rare plant monitoring hikes are coming soon. The plants are not quite ready yet.



MRATC is not scheduling and publicizing group hikes in advance until June, due to ongoing COVID concerns in our area. Some hikes may be scheduled on a week by week basis. If a club member wishes to lead a hike, reply to this email and it can be listed in the Sunday email and on the club’s website the week of the hike (www.mratc.org under the Sidebar, Current Week’s Information). The ATC recommends keeping group size small and not carpooling.



Check website for schedule of music and eventswww.traildays.us.



 Grayson Highlands St. Park and adjacent area map (Avenza maps app) free download available:  https://www.avenzamaps.com/maps/1204147/grayson-highlands-state-park.


Virginia AT license plates:  $15 of the $25 annual fee goes to the ATC VA Regional Office to support the AT – including the new Damascus Trail Center. If you would like to order one, go to this section of the DMV website:



Outstanding AT hike videos: A member of the Tidewater AT Club who knows a couple who are section hiking and have made and posted a series of videos, passed along the notice of the You Tube posting, so we all can enjoy them. They are wonderful videos! Go to You Tube and search for “Campfire Confidential” to select a few to watch.


Current MRATC information is also posted on Facebook:  Mt. Rogers Appalachian Trail Club (MRATC), on Twitter:  twitter.com @Mt_rogersATC, and on Instagram.com:  mountrogersATclub. 


AT Community Update:

Three AT Communities hosted webinars about their trail communities. You can watch and listen to the videorecordings by pasting these links into your browser:

Roan Mountain: https://youtu.be/UeZXOZPtQaw

Unicoi: https://youtu.be/MpawM6TGwjY

      Damascus: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w5VvZmg-tm4&t=7s


Visit the ATC's website for information and hikes in AT Communities up and down the AT, listed by state.

In our area, the AT Communities are Damascus, Abingdon, and Marion/Smyth County. 




Grayson Highlands State Park Backpackers' pkg. lot reservations:https://www.reserveamerica.com/explore/grayson-highlands-state-park/VA/140172/35528/campsite-booking


The bridge at Comers Creek Falls has been removed as of 3/20/2021. Steps and stepstones have been installed  so a low-water crossing can be made and this section of the AT from Dickey Gap south has been re-opened. During times of suspected high water, hikers should plan to use the marked detour on Rte. 650.


Bears:  In 2019 and 2020, there were fewer reports of bears taking hikers' food than in 2018, but bears could come back to try to get food from hikers, especially if they are cooking. Hikers are urged to use the metal bearboxes for overnight food storage near Saunders Shelter, Lost Mtn. Shelter, Thomas Knob Shelter, near Rhododendron Gap, Wise Shelter, Old Orchard Shelter, the Scales, Hurricane Mtn. Shelter, and Trimpi Shelter. 




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