Who are you following?
As Ramdino explains in his recent video, hikers are starting to return to the trail. But closures and regulations vary state by state. It appears many of the trailheads near Springer are blocked off.
Ramdino explains that while NC is opening parks and trails, they are not opening the Appalachian Trail trailheads. This may be at the request of the ATC, he speculates. (Note: Ramdino says that some trailheads in NC that are not easily accessible are open).
The Fontana Visitors Center is closed, but the "Fontana Hilton" (the Fontana Dam Shelter, mm 165.7) is open. He says Tennessee state parks are also opening as well.
Ramdino is considering making his hiker list pubic again. If and when he does, we will restore the 2020 list here at Hiker Focus as well. Any hiker who does not want to be listed may contact me, and I will remove them.
Check out Ramdino's video for details. Happy hiking!
I've been holding off on writing or posting anything new for Hiker Focus to see how the coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic (now a pandemic) developed. I have to admit to having been shocked at what has happened in the past month - the social distancing, closure of businesses, and stay-at-home orders are obviously unprecedented in my lifetime. We are all trying to navigate "uncharted waters", as I keep hearing.
I had only been watching a few NOBO vLoggers, and they, one by one, decided to leave the trail as they inevitably had to do. I think everything about 2020 is summed up nicely in Ramdino's latest video. I, too, have been very disheartened to see the negativity and divisiveness in the hiker community.
Just as with Ramdino's channel, the idea behind Hiker Focus is to support and encourage hikers. I do not like the thought of people using the 2020 thru hiker list on Hiker Focus, part of which was derived from Ramdino's list, to create negativity. Because of the connection of this site to Ramdino's list, and because of Ramdino's decision to take his list down, I have decided to do the same with the 2020 thru hiker lists on Hiker Focus.
I sincerely hope that everyone stays safe and well and that we can all enjoy a 2021 thru hiking season together. Until then, be well, be safe, and happy hiking!