Whether you're thru-hiking or taking just a few days to enjoy the outdoors, hundreds of shelters are available for those camping on the southern portion of the Appalachian Trail.
In a press release, the Forest Service says hikers are encouraged to stop in at shelters provided along the trail in Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina and Virginia. The shelters average about eight miles apart along the trail, varying in some parts, and might not be frequently maintained in some locations.
Hikers can plan ahead by checking forest websites for site-specific details before their trip.
The southern portion of the Appalachian Trail runs through four national forests:
- Tennessee: Cherokee National Forest
- Georgia: Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forests
- North Carolina: National Forests in North Carolina
- Virginia: George Washington and Jefferson National Forests
"The Appalachian Trail is a popular hiking path stretching more than 2,100 miles from Georgia to Maine," the Forest Service's release describes. "About 100 miles of the trail are in North Carolina and about 226 miles of the trail are along the North Carolina and Tennessee border."
Forest Service officials say hikers are encouraged to maintain safe, social distances while on the trail, and to follow guidelines from the CDC and local health authorities.