Trail building and maintenance is the centerpiece of the PATC's mission. The PATC maintains 240 miles of the Appalachian Trail (Pine Grove Furnace, PA to Rockfish Gap, VA), and almost 1000 miles of other trails in the Mid Atlantic Region, with the Charlottesville Chapter holding responsibility for the southernmost section. The effort requires the contributions of hundreds of volunteers, who contribute as trail overseers, trail crew members, or in various other capacities. PATC volunteers log tens of thousands of work hours every year, in their efforts to keep hiking trails well maintained.
During the Charlottesville Chapter's monthly trail maintenance hikes we: 1) maintain trail tread, 2) clear from trails vegetation, invasive species, branches, and fallen trees up to about 8” in diameter with handsaws, 3) maintain trail blazes, 4) clear water bars (structures which run water off the trail), and 5) pick up litter and trash. Basic trail maintenance may also include assistance provided by certified chainsaw operators to clear trees of larger than 8” diameter.
From time to time we may also engage in major reconstruction and improvement of existing trail tread (such as the elimination of trail creep over an extended length of trail, reducing grade on deeply rutted trail sections), putting new water bars and check dams in existing tread, extensive clearing of vegetation, clearing of large rocks from trails, and organized extensive clearing of blow downs by trail crews.
Our usual schedule for trail maintenance is the last Saturday of the month, except November and December, when there is usually just one work trip on the first Saturday in December. Check the current Hike Schedule to be sure. Most often we work on the trails the club and its members oversee, but occasionally we work on other trails.
The Charlottesville Chapter maintains the following trail:
The Appalachian Trail, Rockfish Gap to McCormick Gap.
Maintenance Coordinator - John Shannon
Individual Trail Overseers in the Charlottesville Chapter:
Beagle Gap to Calf Mountain - Andy Willgruber
Boxwood and Andy's Overlook - Iva Gillet
Mattie's Run Loop, Boundary East - Dave Abdallah and Jodi Frederiksen
Meadow and Chimney - Dan Ralston
Mutton Top - Marit Gay
Riprap to hairpin turn in trail - Lindsay Brown
Turk Mountain to Crimora Lake - Marit Gay and Jeff Monroe
District Manager of Trails in the Charlottesville Chapter:
Mutton Hollow District - Bill Holman
For more information on PATC trail maintenance in the Southern District of Shenandoah National Park, go to southshenandoah.net