Stay Safe and Healthy

Responding to COVID-19

Learn how ATC is working to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 on the Appalachian Trail. View the latest updates and download guides on how to best prevent contracting this dangerous virus.

 

The ATC continues to advise long-distance hikers to postpone hikes until 2022 or when the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has deemed the pandemic under control, and/or a COVID-19 vaccine or effective treatment is widely available and distributed. Visit appalachiantrail.org/COVID-19 for more information.

Prepping for 2021

If you hike the Trail in 2021, proper planning and preparation will help ensure everyone’s A.T. experiences are safe, healthy, responsible, and successful.

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Major A.T. Closures

 The Appalachian Trail is open for day use in all areas (except for a seasonal closure in Baxter State Park, Maine).
The most significant  overnight-site closures or restrictions affecting the A.T. users listed below;  visit our A.T. Closures page
for a more complete state-by-state list.

Quarantines, testing requirements, or other travel restrictions or recommendations are currently in place for some or most visitors to Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine.
See our A.T. Closures page for details.

GEORGIA, NORTH CAROLINA, TENNESSEE, AND VIRGINIA
All shelters on U.S. Forest Service lands (most areas between the southern terminus in Georgia and Shenandoah National Park in Virginia) remain closed. Click here for more information

PENNSYLVANIA
Hamburg Borough Watershed – 10 miles of the A.T. Closed to Overnight Use and Parking
The Hamburg Reservoir parking lot and public access to A.T. are open to public daily from dawn to dusk. No overnight parking will be permitted until further notice.  Click here for more information.

MASSACHUSETTS
All overnight camping is prohibited.
Due to camping and shelter closures on all federal and state lands in Massachusetts, no overnight camping is available. Click here for more information.

SHELTER AND PRIVY ADVISORY

Due to the difficulty of social distancing and the possibility of COVID-19 being transmitted on surfaces, hikers are advised to avoid shelters and picnic tables, and bring their own personal shelter and food storage device.

Also note that many privies are currently not being maintained. To avoid overflowing privies and placing extra burdens on volunteers when they return to the field, we recommend avoiding the use privies unless otherwise stipulated by the local Trail maintaining club or land management agency.

In all cases, bring a trowel to dig a cathole following Leave No Trace principles. Most A.T. privies are maintained by volunteers on an infrequent schedule. However, the privies at overnight campsites overseen by on-site Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) caretakers (primarily in New Hampshire) are cleaned on a daily basis, leading to a lower risk of spreading COVID-19. Additionally, many of these AMC overnight sites are located in areas where digging a cathole can be ineffective.

Please be aware that many shelters and privies are officially closed, even if signage is not posted at the site location.

Camping is generally allowed around closed shelters unless posted otherwise. 

 

COVID-19 A.T. Report Form

If you are diagnosed with COVID-19 while on the A.T. or in a trailside community, please submit a report to the ATC with as much detail as possible. This will help us track potential infections and inform other hikers of needed safety precautions.

Wellness Guidelines & Trail Closures

View and download information on how to reduce your risk of contracting and spreading COVID-19, both on the Appalachian Trail and beyond.

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COVID-19 Cases in A.T. Counties

View a map of reported COVID-19 cases in the counties through which the Appalachian Trail passes. This map data is provided by Johns Hopkins University, which updates once daily.

View Map