February 26, 2021
Trailway News: Winter Prep is the Right Step
We at the Appalachian Trail Conservancy (and thousands of hikers) are looking forward to the beauty and adventure of a springtime walk on the Appalachian Trail. However, with three more weeks of winter ahead of us, make sure to take extra precautions and be prepared for any upcoming hikes. Multiple incidents on the A.T. last weekend required the assistance of search and rescue (SAR) teams. We sincerely thank all of the SAR teams and hope for the quick recovery of the injured hikers.
We encourage all winter A.T. hikers to take extra precautions when attempting trips of any length.
- Be Prepared: Know the expected weather conditions and prior weather events that may have impacted the Trail. Snow and ice may linger on trails well after the snow has melted at lower elevations and trailheads. Be aware of current Trail conditions by visiting our Trail Updates page. In addition, while the COVID-19 pandemic continues, be aware of any restrictions and make sure you have the gear and knowledge needed to keep you and others safe.
- Stay Connected: Make sure family and friends off the Trail know your hiking plan. This can help in the event of an emergency that requires additional support from local agencies and partners.
- Be Flexible: If you encounter winter conditions and are not prepared for them, turn back until conditions improve. This will help avoid incidents like hypothermia, frostbite, and falls that may require emergency response. Avoid putting yourself and rescuers at risk by holding off until Trail conditions are safer.
Learn more helpful tips on preparing for winter A.T. hikes by clicking below.
Lead image courtesy of Ryan Hopkins
The A.T. and Climate Change: Reviewing the Basics
As we dive into our series on climate change and its effects on the Appalachian Trail, it is important to lay the groundwork for several key topics. For some, this information will be familiar. For others, it will be brand new. For all of us, it will be essential for understanding how we move forward to protect not only places like the A.T., but the rest of the world around us.
The A.T. runs through 22 Native Nations’ traditional territories and holds an abundant amount of Indigenous history. Trey Adcock, Associate Professor of Interdisciplinary Studies and Director of American Indian and Indigenous Studies at the University of North Carolina, explains how land acknowledgment starts by recognizing and respecting that you are on the lands of an Indigenous people.