Check out the Upcoming Activities section below for the * which highlights newly added events.

Coordinator's Corner
April 2019

During the month of April, as hikers flood the trail, the changes which occur daily in the mountains, forests and upon the balds of our Appalachian Trail are evident.  Sudden storms assail the heights with wind, rain and sometimes icy fog.  Then as the sun shines through the ever-awakening trees and the temperature rises, we happily follow the spring changes north.  All change brings both beauty and discomfort. 

The same is true in ALDHA.  Shortly before the ALDHA spring Board meeting Jim Chambers submitted his resignation to the ALDHA Board for personal reasons. The ALDHA Board with regret voted to accept his resignation.
Under the ALDHA bylaws the Assistant Coordinator (Ron Burger) automatically assumed the Coordinator position. Also, the Board approved Randy Anderson as the new ALDHA Assistant Coordinator. 
Ron has served previously as the ALDHA Coordinator.   In addition, as ALDHA’s Outreach coordinator, you have probably seen Ron at various events talking about what ALDHA does in the hiking community.  He organized and executed with help, our excellent celebration and subsequent video commemorating the 50 years of the National Scenic Trails Act presented at the 2018 Gathering.  He’ll be standing at the ALDHA booth at the Harper’s Ferry Flip Flop Festival and at Trail Days.  Make sure you stop in and say, Hi. 

Words from our Coordinator will return next month. 
Happy Spring,
Vera Hurst
Blaze Editor
Check out our recently updated 2019 Hostel Binder at your favorite Appalachian Trail Hostel!  Didn't know that ALDHA had information in Hostels? Ask to see it. 
Hello from ALDHA's 2019 Gathering Team!
We are excited to announce the keynote speaker for this year's Gathering:   

Bart Smith   


On the afternoon of July 25, 1992, Bart Smith set foot on the Pacific Crest Trail at Manning Park, Canada and took a step southbound.  His pack was heavy but the extra 20 pounds of camera gear provided him the opportunity to share his sense of wonder with the world.  The weight burdened his legs, shoulders and frame yet allowed his spirit to fly. This was just the beginning of a life-changing journey.
On October 2nd, 2018 Bart walked under the St Louis Arch completing his trek of both the Louis and Clark Trail and the entire National Trail System. Bart, aka Infinite Dust, is the only person to have walked all eleven National Scenic Trails and Nineteen National Historic Trails.  He has eight coffee-table books published showcasing the National Trails and hopes to continue using his images and experiences to advocate for America's remarkable National Trail System.
Bart is not only known for his hiking adventures, but also for his world-class
 photography.  His talk at this fall’s Gathering, promises to be a real treat for all.  Don’t miss it.  Here is the link to his website:

Now, Bart may be our keynote speaker, but the full program is not possible without you.  We need workshop presenters to share with us their passion for hiking and for the trail.  Your knowledge on any hiking related subject could help us all.  To volunteer to be a presenter, click on [Workshop Presenters Form] on The Gathering home page:

 It is not too early to register for this year’s Gathering.  You can register by clicking on [Gathering Registration Form] on the Gathering home page:
We're always looking for volunteers to help with activities and contests at the Gathering. If you're interested in volunteering, email us at:
Remember to mark your calendars as the Gathering returns in 2019 to the
Columbus Day weekend!
The 2019 ALDHA Companion is now available.  Click the link to download.

Update on the Waynesboro Campground 
In a partnership created with Waynesboro, VA  ALDHA donated funds first to build a camping area for AT hikers and then in the fall of 2018 voted to install a barrier fence around the campground.

The Parks and Recreation Department of Waynesboro managed the project and the campground looks great.  They have, also, installed posts for hammock hanging. More information will be available in the Spring ALDHA newsletter.
For more information concerning AT Trail Club work crew schedules for your region, visit:
The Boundary Work Trip held the March 28 – 29, 2018 was very productive. Thanks for all the volunteers who contributed over 200 hours of volunteer time. We had members travel to Blackburn Center from New Hampshire and North Carolina and many points in between. The food was good and the camaraderie was terrific. Several individuals experienced their first boundary work trip and everyone enjoyed themselves.  We are looking forward to doing it again in the Fall. Look for a full write up with pictures in the Spring ALDHA Newsletter.
A weekend of events from our friends at the AT Museum.  ALDHA members will be attending the banquet and will have a booth set up at the fair on Sunday.  Please stop and say hello!
Upcoming Activities
Are you looking for an activity to motivate you to stay in shape?  Are you missing trail family?  Would you like to give back to the trail? Here is the latest info on upcoming activities.  * Indicates that this event is a new addition to calendar.
Appalachian Trail Conservancy's Flip Flop Kick Off
Apr 27 - 28

Harper's Ferry, WV
Don't like the cold or heat, want to learn about how to take advantage of seasonal weather conditions and avoid A.T. hiker crowds?  Attend this festival and learn the advantages of flip flop hiking the AT. The festival  offers a full schedule of family-friendly activities and guided short hikes highlighting nature and history. 
Appalachian Trail Museum Volunteer Kick-off
Appalachian Trail Museum
Pine Grove Furnace State Park, PA

Event honoring the trail crew of the Appalachian Trail Museum.  For invitation and information, follow the link.
Appalachian Trail Hall of Fame Induction
May 4, 2019

U.S. Army Heritage and Education Center, 950 Soldiers Dr, Carlisle, PA 17013, US
Banquet honors this year's AT Hall of Fame Inductees.  See link for more information.
Hiker Festival
May 5, 2019
Appalachian Trail Museum

Pine Grove Furnace State Park
Check the AT Museum for more information.
Appalachian Trail Days Festival 
May 17 - 19,  2019

Town Park, Damascus, VA
Appalachian Trail Days festival annually celebrates past and present hikers and trail maintainers who love the AT. This event, for all to enjoy, brings music, food and vendors together in this AT trail town where friendships are made and renewed.  The Hiker Parade is a must attend. See the website for more details!
*American Hiking Society
June 1, 2019
National Trails Day featuring hiking events with your local trail clubs or in your local areas.  ALDHA members let's get out and  "Take a Hike with a local trail club" and  celebrate National Trails Day!!
*Duncannon Appalachian Trail Festival
June 15, 2019
10 AM - 5 PM

On High St, between Cumberland & Ann, Duncannon, PA
As an offical Appalachian Trail community, Duncannon is eager to share the pride and enthusiasm of being part of a national treasure. Join as we celebrate the Appalachian Trail with live entertainment, food trucks, wildlife presentations, crafts for kids, hiking clubs, and arts & crafts vendors.

ALDHA Work Trips -
South Work Trip 
May 19-20, 2019 Trail Days' Hardcore, look for sign up sheets at the ALDHA booth for more information and to sign up.
Jim, (423) 440-2518,
Mid-Atlantic Work Trips
May 8 - 11, 2019, Harriman State Park, Ramapo, NY. Follow link to ALDHA webpage and for more information contact, Ron Bungay at or call 410-627-6367,
Northeast Work Trips
*April 20, 2019

We will be working at our rock step project at Fahnestock State Park on April 20th, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.  Meet on Rte. 301 on the west side of Canopus Lake. RAIN OR SHINE.  Call Tim Messerich for more information.
*Other Saturday's in April & May:
The club will be filling in a large root ball hole using pick & shovel and moving heavy rock within the root ball. Also, planting four new pine trees at RPH to replace trees lost during storms last year. Stepping stone installation at Fahnestock State Park  Work trips normally run from 10 am to 4 pm on Saturdays with camping option at RPH Cabin over night.  It is important to contact, Tim Messerich for more information.
July 19,20, 21, 2019, Annual work weekend at RPH Cabin.
For more information about these two events contact:  
Tim Messerich at, 84
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