Tuesday, May 16, 2017

AT Museum Volunteer Newsletter - May 2017

May 2017
Brought to you by Nathaniel "Angry Bird" Shank, Appalachian Trail Museum Manager

Coffee Table donated by Bruce Dunlavy

New Children's Exhibit Sign

Flip Flop Festival (Harper's Ferry WV)


Volunteer Needs
If you know somebody who would want to be a greeter at the museum or volunteer in other ways send me a message at manager@atmuseum.org 

May, 19th-20th…The Museum will have a display at the Appalachian Trail Days Festival in Damascus, Virginia. Docents will be needed during that weekend to keep the museum open.

Road Scholar Hikes
 If you are interested in helping with the group but are not interested in being "the guide" then you can still signup just as long as you leave a comment with your sign up.

Monday, May 22nd…Meeting at the AT Museum at 9:20 A.M. to shuttle up to big flat and hiking back to the museum.

Follow this link for signups: Volunteer Needs


Hall Of Fame Banquet/ June 2nd
This banquet is swiftly approaching so don't forget to mark your calendars for June, 2nd at the Comfort Suites in Carlisle. 

Don't forget to buy your tickets to the HOF Banquet by clicking HERE or by coming down to the museum to purchase tickets in person.

HOF Hiker Festival/ June 3rd
This event will be held at the Appalachian Trail Museum free of charge.

Sign up to volunteer HERE.

During the festival there will be plenty to do around the park with children's activities, authors talking about the trail, bluegrass music and FOOD!!! Invite is open to all free of charge.

Saturday morning/ June 3rd, from 9 AM to 11 AM, Pine Grove Furnace State Park will also be hosting a special event for children by the Fred Rodgers Co./PBS WITF/“Daniel Tiger.”


Program//Saturday May 27 2017 2:00pm - Presentation by: Tom Johnson

"How the Appalachian Trail Came to Pennsylvania

Tom Johnson is an excellent speaker and will be talking about how the Appalachian Trail was developed in Our local area. 

This presentation will be held inside the AT Museum's lower level where the children's exhibits are on display. This presentation should last about an hour leaving time for questions and answers after.


Program//Sunday June 11 2017 2:00pm - Presentation by: Lorrie Preston

"Bears, Rivers, & Pastoral Beauty - NJ, NY, CT & MA on the Appalachian Trail"

Lorrie Preston, a.k.a. "Shutterbug" is an A.T. Museum Docent, SATC and CVATC Member

Did you know that NJ has the most bears per square mile of any state along the A.T.?
It's true!
Join us as we take a closer look at the serene beauty and surprises that the trail brings from NJ through MA, as Shutterbug & friends continue their section-hike of the A.T. through the seasons.  This multi-media program is fifth in a series highlighting the natural beauty, history, and memories that make each state that the trail passes through a unique experience, all its own.


Angry Bird Trail Stories

  In 2012, I hiked from Maine to Georgia starting May 30 and finishing November 20th. My trail name was "Angry Bird" because I was struck by a Gos Hawk when still in Maine hiking along the trail. I was also given the name dress shoes for wearing dress shoes from Maine to PA (they did have a sneaker bottom). 

     1. Why was the Appalachian Trail created?
In the 1920's Benton MacKaye made public his ideas of building a trail accross the Appalachian Mountains. Benton MacKaye himself said, "The ulitmate purpose of the Appalachian Trail? To walk. To see. And to see what you see." 

     2. Why did you decide to thru-hike the AT?
When I was young I met a man in Harpers Ferry who was thru hiking the trail. I didn't know about the trail until then, but from that point on I had a pull on my heart to be alone in the wild. 

     3. In your opinion, is it better to thru-hike the AT North to South or South to North, and why?
I hiked North to South and I would say that is a good way to have some alone time in the wild. I would reccomend starting earlier than the crowd because it is less imact on the trail and better for the environment (plus who wants to hike in the wild with a crowd of people). Northbound is better for the epic finish on Mt. Katahdin though. Do your research because parts of the trail close in the winter.

     4. What are the most important things to bring while hiking the AT and why?
Comfortable fitting gear is extremely vital. Comfortable shoes is by far the most important gear to have. I also reccomend walking with hiking poles. Your knees will thank you later! Your pack should fit perfectly as well and not be too heavy. It is easy to carry too much stuff but all you really need is water, food, a sleeping bag and a tent. Simple is better!

Sunday Meetin' Shoes

     5. How did you personally prepare for the hike?
I went on a few small test hikes around my home to see what gear I was not using every day. I parted ways with a lot of gear and ended up buying a new pack, new shoes, new sleeping bag and a hammok instead of a tent (later I used a tent to avoid mosquitoes). I was already physically fit.

     6. What aspect of doing the thru-hike was the most challenging, and why?
I didn't ever want the trail to end so getting off the trail was mentally the hardest part. Because people back home didn't have the experience that I had they couldn't relate to what I had gone through so that was hard for a while to adapt. Also when I got home I realized how noisy and colorful things are, especially in public places. 

     7. Was there a certain portion of the Appalachian Trail that was particularly harder than other parts?  What made it harder?
Maine was my favorite section of the trail because it was the hardest to complete. There was a lot of flooding when I hiked through Maine so my feet where blistered up and the river crossings where dangerous. Also in Tennessee huricane Sandy had hit so I was walking through knee to waiste deep snow and my water kept freezing.

Roan Mtn. TE

     8. When would you say is the best time of the year to begin hiking it?
If you are going south I would say May. If you are going north I would say February-March whenever the weather is warm enough. 

     9. Would you recommend hiking it solo or with a partner?
Solo is better because you are not relying on another persons schedule. You will want to go into towns that others will not and vis versa. 

     10. What kinds of foods are the best to pack?
I did not pack like other hikers packed (I had no stove to save weight), but I found a staple food that works for me that I wouldn't get tired of eating. That was peanut butter and jelly with real bread and not flat bread like other hikers would use. Some other good choices are trail mix, roman noodles, instant mashed potatoes and oat meal. It is also good to carry snickers, nutri grain bars and other good snacks. Nutella on everything is also a very great treat. On the trail there is a lot of time to think about food!!!

     11. If you had to give advice to a future thru-hiker, what would you tell them?
Having good shoes and socks is so important because your feet keep you going. If you have a large pack you will fill it up with things that you don't need. Also take the time to enjoy where you are because when it is over you'll want to keep going. 


Down the Trail
May 19-21//Trail Days Festival (Damascus VA)
May 27// First Program of the Year!!! Presentation on how the AT came to PA by Tom Johnson.
June 3// AT Museum Hiker Festival

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