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Vandalism, specifically graffiti, continues to be a major problem along the Appalachian Trail. This photograph was taken in 1971 and shows one of Hawk Rock's scenic views ruined by expressions of painted art. In recent years, continued graffiti on the same ledge has forced the local trail club to partake in cleanup efforts.
The Appalachian Trail was vandalized in January 2013 when a man named Tyler Pace destroyed a fenced area of the trail at Max patch, NC and allowed groups of men to illegally drive trucks into an ecologically-protected area. Pace was sentenced to 90 days in jail for causing over $5,000 in damage to the AT's land.
Photographed at Bake Oven Knob near Germansville, PA, this photograph shows defacement of the Appalachian Trail's natural landscape by graffiti artists. Graffiti has been a growing problem along the trail, and due to the lack of prevalent law enforcement officers along the trail, many crimes such as this go unpunished but not unnoticed.
James T. Jones was known as "Bismark" along the Appalachian Trail. Once an avid hiker with an amiable personality, he was captured in Damascus, VA in 2015 by the FBI on several counts of corporate embezzlement. He had been on the FBI's wanted list since 2009 and apparently found recluse and a new identity on the AT where he was able to elude authorities for over five years.