Managing and Preserving the Appalachian Trail

Appalachian Trail pic

Appalachian Trail
Image: appalachiantrail.org

US Navy Rear Admiral David F. Baucom has been serving the country for over three decades. As a way to relax and stay fit, RADM David Baucom engages in and enjoys hiking. One of the popular hiking destinations in the United States is the Appalachian Trail.

Traversing 14 states from Georgia to Maine, the Appalachian Trail covers 2,179 miles. It is one of the world’s longest successively marked footpaths. Around 2,000 people try to hike the entire trail annually, while an estimated two to three million hike portions of the trail. Approximately 550 miles of the trail are in Virginia, making it the state with the longest section. Hiking on the trail is considered easiest in West Virginia and Maryland.

Managing and preserving the trail’s characteristic beauty is the Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC). Through inspiration and education, ATC is at work to protect the trail. The nonprofit organization was founded in 1925.

For the first 40 years it was managed by an all-volunteer staff based in Washington, DC. Today, ATC has central offices in Harper’s Ferry, West Virginia, and has around 40,000 members. Fifteen volunteers comprise its governing body. ATC has around 45 full-time staff members found in six locations.

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