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Konnarock Trail Crew

Konnarock is the Appalachian Trail Conservancy’s flagship crew program, founded in 1983 and named after its original base camp in southwest Virginia. The crew works on the Appalachian Trail from Rockfish Gap, near Waynesboro, Virginia, to the Trail’s southern terminus at Springer Mountain in Georgia. The program is a joint venture of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, the 12 southern Trail clubs, the U.S. Forest Service, and the National Park Service.

At Konnarock, volunteers of diverse ages, backgrounds, and experience levels work together to build durable trail that will last for generations. After a multi-day session working as a team, learning new skills, and living in the backcountry both the crew and the trail are transformed. No experience is necessary, but you must be 16 years or older to apply. If you are 16, you will need to be accompanied by a parent/guardian during the crew week. If you are 17, your parent or guardian will need to sign a release form prior to the work week. The Appalachian Trail Conservancy provides training, equipment, and room and board. Crews are transported in ATC vehicles from the base camp in Sugar Grove to a primitive, backcountry tent camp near the project site.


Konnarock Volunteer Trail Crew  

2024 Schedule 

*Please note: The first day of each hitch is when volunteers arrive at Konnarock basecamp at 4 PM. The following day, crews will load up and head to the project site. 

July 14th – July 19th (5-day hitch) 

 Crew 1 

War Spur – Trail Relocation – This project will complete an approximately one-mile section of new sustainable trail in the Mountain Lake Wilderness Area in southwest Virginia. Work consists of building wilderness-grade trail with minimal land impact and structures. Each workday there will be a roughly 1 ½ mile hike to the work site. The campsite is a vehicle accessible on a gated Forest Service road adjacent to the Wind Rock Overlook. 

 Crew 2 

Log Cabin – Trail Relocation – The crew will continue construction of a one-mile section of new sustainable trail, shifting the A.T. away from adjacent private lands near Camp Creek Bald in western North Carolina. Work is predominately building sidehill trail. Each workday there will be approximately ½ mile hike to the worksite. The crew will be camping at a vehicle-accessible site on private property adjacent to the trail.  

July 22nd – July 27th (5-day hitch)  

 Crew 1 

High Country – Trail Rehabilitation – Work will include improving drainage, building rock structures and treadway definition in the High Country of southwest Virginia. Each workday the Crew will be hiking approximately ½  miles to the worksite and be treated to gorgeous views. This crew session will require an approximately two-mile hike to the backcountry crew campsite near Mount Rogers. The campsite is not vehicle accessible. UTV support will be supplied for packing in camping gear. 

 Crew 2 

Temple Hill – Trail Rehabilitation – The crew will perform severely needed tread definition, construction of log cribbing and steps, and drainage improvements on a remote trail section. The worksite is in the mountains of east Tennessee south of Erwin. Access to the backcountry campsite, located near Temple Hill Gap, requires ½ mile hike UTV support will be supplied for packing in group and individual camping gear.  

July 30th – August 4th (5-day hitch) 

 Crew 1 

High Country – Trail Rehabilitation – Work will include improving drainage, building rock structures and treadway definition in the High Country of southwest Virginia. Each workday the Crew will be hiking approximately ½  miles to the worksite and be treated to gorgeous views. This crew session will require an approximately two-mile hike to the backcountry crew campsite near Mount Rogers. The campsite is not vehicle accessible. UTV support will be supplied for packing in camping gear. 

 Crew 2 

Temple Hill – Trail Rehabilitation – The crew will perform severely needed tread definition, construction of log cribbing and steps, and drainage improvements on a remote trail section. The worksite is in the mountains of east Tennessee south of Erwin.Access to the backcountry campsite, located near Temple Hill Gap, requires ½ mile hike UTV support will be supplied for packing in group and individual camping gear.

Past Crew Sessions

July 6th – July 11th (5-day hitch) 

Crew 1 

War Spur – Trail Relocation – This project will complete an approximately one-mile section of new sustainable trail in the Mountain Lake Wilderness Area in southwest Virginia. Work consists of building wilderness-grade trail with minimal land impact and structures. Each workday there will be a roughly 1 ½ mile hike to the work site. The campsite is vehicle accessible on a gated Forest Service road adjacent to the Wind Rock Overlook.

July 2nd – 5th 

Basecamp closed 

June 26th – July 1st (5-day hitch) 

Crew 1 

War Spur – Trail Relocation – This project will complete an approximately one-mile section of new sustainable trail in the Mountain Lake Wilderness Area in southwest Virginia. Work consists of building wilderness-grade trail with minimal land impact and structures. Each workday there will be a roughly 1 ½ mile hike to the work site. The campsite is vehicle accessible on a gated Forest Service road adjacent to the Wind Rock Overlook. 

 Crew 2 

Log Cabin – Trail Relocation – The crew will continue construction of a one-mile section of new sustainable trail, shifting the A.T. away from adjacent private lands near Camp Creek Bald in western North Carolina. Work is predominately building sidehill trail. Each workday there will be approximately ½ mile hike to the worksite. The crew will be camping at a vehicle-accessible site on private property adjacent to the trail.

June 18th – June 23th (5-day hitch) 

Crew 2 

North of Battery Cliffs – Trail Rehabilitation – This project consists of tread definition, building stone structures and drainage improvements along the spine of the Blue Ridge Mountains in central Virginia. There is an approximately 1 ½ mile hike to the worksite. Camping will be at a vehicle-accessible National Park Service administrative site near Humpback Rocks.  

June 21st – June 23rd (2-day hitch) 

Crew 1 

Little Wilson Creek – Trail Relocation/Rehabilitation – This project will complete a short trail relocation and improve treadway conditions in the Little Wilson Creek Wilderness Area in southwest Virginia. Work will consist of building wilderness-grade trail with minimal land impact, drainage improvements and constructing minimalist stone structures. Hike to the worksite will be approximately 1 ½  miles via the AT across Stone Mountain, with expansive views of the Mount Rogers High Country. The crew will stay at Konnarock Basecamp and commute to and from the trailhead each day. 

June 10th – June 18th (8-day hitch) 

Crew 1 

Ridgepole Mtn. – Trail Rehabilitation – This project area is located near Franklin, NC in the Southern Nantahala Wilderness. The project will rehabilitate various points along the AT in western NC. Work will consist of rock steps and cribbing, tread definition and drainage improvements. . Hike to the worksite will be approximately 1 mile via short bushwhack and the AT. Camping is on a gated Forest Service Road.

June 10th – June 15th (5-day hitch)

Crew 2 

North of Battery Cliffs – Trail Rehabilitation – This project consists of tread definition, building stone structures and drainage improvements along the spine of the Blue Ridge Mountains in central Virginia. There is an approximately 1 ½ mile hike to the worksite. Camping will be at a vehicle-accessible National Park Service administrative site near Humpback Rocks.  

June 6th – 9th   

Basecamp closed

May 31st – June 5th  (5-day hitch) 

Crew 1 

Log Cabin – Trail RelocationThe crew will continue construction of a one-mile section of new sustainable trail, shifting the A.T. away from adjacent private lands near Camp Creek Bald in western North Carolina. Work is predominately building sidehill trail. Each workday there will be approximately ½ mile hike to the worksite. The crew will be camping at a vehicle accessible site on private property adjacent to the trail.  

Crew 2 

War Spur – Trail Relocation This project will complete an approximately one-mile section of new sustainable trail in the Mountain Lake Wilderness Area in southwest Virginia. Work consists of building wilderness-grade trail with minimal land impact and structures. Each workday there will be a roughly 1 ½ mile hike to the work site. The campsite is vehicle accessible on a gated Forest Service road adjacent to the Wind Rock Overlook. 

April 25th–May 3rd (8-day hitch)

Crew 1 

Byron H. Reece – Trail Relocation – This crew will begin a multi-year relocation of a popular side trail accessing the AT in the Blood Mountain Wilderness Area in Georgia. Work will consist of building wilderness-grade trail with minimal land impact and structures. Hike to the worksite will be approximately ¼ mile. Vehicle-accessible camping will be provided at a developed Forest Service campground nearby. 

 Crew 2 

Upper Rocky Row – Trail Rehabilitation – The crew will be building rock steps, drainage structures, and reshaping the existing tread to mitigate erosion. Sweeping views will be a hallmark of this worksite just north of the James River in central Virginia. This session will require hiking approximately two miles to a backcountry campsite. This project requires strenuous hiking 1 ½  miles each day to access the work site. The campsite is not vehicle accessible. UTV support will be supplied for packing in camping gear. 

May 9th – May 17th (8-day hitch) 

Crew 1

Byron H. Reece – Trail Relocation – This crew will begin a multi-year relocation of a popular side trail accessing the AT in the Blood Mountain Wilderness Area in Georgia. Work will consist of building wilderness-grade trail with minimal land impact and structures. Hike to the worksite will be approximately ¼ mile. Vehicle-accessible camping will be provided at a developed Forest Service campground nearby. 

Crew 2 

South of Yellow Creek Gap – Trail Rehabilitation — This project is located near Fontana Lake in western North Carolina. Crew work on this steep mountainside area consists of constructing log cribbing and steps, tread definition, and drainage improvements. Worksites are approximately ½  to 1 mile from the trailhead. Camping is on a vehicle-accessible gated Forest Service road. 

May 23rd – May 28th  (5-day hitch) 

Crew 1 

Log Cabin – Trail Relocation – The crew will continue construction of a one-mile section of new sustainable trail, shifting the A.T. away from adjacent private lands near Camp Creek Bald in western North Carolina. Work is predominately building sidehill trail. Each workday there will be ½ mile hike to the worksite. The crew will be camping at a vehicle-accessible site on private property adjacent to the trail.  

Crew 2 

War Spur – Trail Relocation – This project will complete an approximately one-mile section of new sustainable trail in the Mountain Lake Wilderness Area in southwest Virginia. Work consists of building wilderness-grade trail with minimal land impact and structures. Each workday there will be a 1 ½ mile hike to the work site. The campsite is vehicle accessible on a gated Forest Service road adjacent to the Wind Rock Overlook.

2018-konnarock-people

Base camp

The Konnarock Crew is hosted by the Mount Rogers National Recreation Area at its Sugar Grove Work Center. The main building houses dining and recreation facilities, an office, and the crew’s tool room. Separate buildings provide a large, institutional kitchen and two shower houses, with bathroom and laundry facilities. Crew members sleep in simple cabins (“pods”) with beds and electricity.

Crew week

Crew members arrive on the evening before their work week starts in time to get settled in, eat dinner, and attend an orientation session. Whether they will be working with Crew 1 or Crew 2, crew members meet their crew leaders and fellow volunteers, and are issued safety equipment and loaner camping gear as needed. An early morning on the first day of the crew week (7 a.m.) begins with a hearty breakfast, followed by any last-minute preparations and departure to the project sites. Volunteers work a multi-day crew session in the field, tent camping at a remote site, and return to base camp for a celebratory dinner the evening of the final day.

Volunteers working more than one session are welcome to stay at Konnarock base camp between sessions, except for the mid-season breaks. Other accommodations may be available for multi-week volunteers during the mid-season breaks. Multi-week volunteers should plan to spend at least an hour or two of their days off pitching in to keep base camp running smoothly—and the rest of it relaxing and exploring the beautiful Mount Rogers area!

Contact us

Give us a call at 828.348.1911 or e-mail crews@appalachiantrail.org with any questions.