Appalachian Trail Histories

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The original route of the Appalachian Trail in Virginia crossed the Pinnacles of Dan, a hike described by hikers at the time as second only to Mt. Katahdin for its difficulty and beauty. In 1952, the ATC moved the route of the Trail more than 50 miles north and west, abandoning this region of Southern Virginia and removing the Pinnacles from the Trail's route forever. Today the Pinnacles are accessible only by permit from the Danville water authority. This image comes from former ATC Chairman Myron Avery's personal scrapbooks in the ATC Archives.

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Marine Corps Veteran and 2012 thru-hiker who went on to found Warrior Expeditions.

Collection: Hikers
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The Little Indian Gap Shelter was located in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park near what is today known as Indian Gap.

Collection: Trail Shelters
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This stone shelter on the summit of Mount Everett in Massachusetts is located just off the Appalachian Trail, but is regularly visited by hikers. It is a stone-sided lean-to popular with day hikers.

Collection: Trail Shelters
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The Willis Ross Camp stood near the shore of Stratton Pond in Vermont until it burned in 1972 and was not rebuilt. It was an enclosed cabin-style shelter of the type often found along the Long Trail/Appalachian Trail in Vermont. It was built and maintained by the Green Mountain Club.

Collection: Trail Shelters
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The Rentschler Shelter was located in Pennsylvania near Bethel, PA, and was built by volunteers from the Blue Mountain Eagle Climbing Club to commemorate Dr. Rentschler's role in founding their club. The shelter was built in 1933 and torn down in the 1960s. It was a partially closed front log lean-to, typical of the shelters built during this period in Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Maryland. A memorial to Dr. Rentschler remains at the site of the former shelter.

Collection: Trail Shelters
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From reverse of photograph: "Replacing the Roof on the East Carry Pond Lean-to (1954)" The East Carry Pond Lean-to is one of the many Ghost Shelters along the Appalachian Trail. In this photograph from 1954, one can see that it was a small log sided lean-to structure with a shingle roof and a dirt floor. It was maintained by the Maine Appalachian Trail Club.

Collection: Trail Shelters
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The Governor Clement Camp near Killington, Vermont, on the Long Trail/Appalachian Trail in 1959. The Governor Clement Camp is a stone sided lean-to and is maintained by the Green Mountain Club.

Collection: Trail Shelters
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The Pico Peak Camp, now known as the Pico Camp, in November 1959 shortly after its completion. This shelter is one of the enclosed plank sided camps along the Long Trail/Appalachian Trail section in Vermont. It is maintained by the Green Mountain Club.

Collection: Trail Shelters
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The Griffith Lake Shelter used to sit near the shore of Griffith Lake in Vermont along the Long Trail/AT route near Mount Tabor, Vermont. This shelter has been removed and replaced with a tenting site for hikers. It was maintained by the Green Mountain Club.

Collection: Trail Shelters
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The Clarendon Lodge Shelter on the Appalachian Trail/Long Trail in Vermont in the fall of 1960. This enclosed camp has been replaced by a lean-to style shelter and is maintained by the Green Mountain Club.

Collection: Trail Shelters
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This map depicts the Appalachian Trail between Fries and Damascus, Virginia in 1941, including the crossing of the New River at Dixon's Ferry. This original route of the Appalachian Trail was abandoned in 1952, when the Trail was rerouted west into the Jefferson National Forest to the route it follows today.

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