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Michelle has taken a renewed interest in this thru-hike, despite not coming along. She joined several Facebook pages, and sometimes she peruses her phone finding tips or gear recommendations for us. Too late for gear changes, but tips are helpful. Here’s one: Fontana Dam is a reroute.

Construction on Fontana Dam has begun and the AT is being rerouted to accommodate the activity.

Survivor Dave’s Trail Shuttles supplied some photos to Dave “AWOL” Miller’s AT Guide Facebook page.

I was at Fontana Dam today and spoke with the construction foreman for the project.
The Dam will be closed for approximately the next 2 years as they will be doing the work in sections.
The first A.T. re-route is relatively easy as it goes through the hairpin parking lot and behind the Visitors Center. It continues it’s path back to stairs that lead to the opposite portion of the work, so hikers can easily access the remainder of the Dam crossing.
The pictures posted in this album have descriptions that will better detail the work and re-route.
Restrooms at the Visitors Center on the inside part are open now, but the outer showers are closed. The water is shutoff seasonally anyway, but until then, they restrooms will be open.
If I hear of further information, I will keep you updated.

What? No showers? What about resupply? I’m not sure if this matters to us. We are planning on doing a mail drop at some point around Fontana, and we will probably use a Post Office, so this is just a blip on the screen.

What else is missing? Weasie’s in Waynesboro no longer has the Pancake Challenge. The West Hartford General Store closed. The Tea Horse Hostel is still in operation but up for sale. People are commenting about the “Sandwich Nazi” in NJ and how we might want to avoid his place. The Pioneer Motel in Front Royal, VA is under new ownership. Shaw’s Lodging, in Monson, ME, was apparently sold and is open still. I heard the “Whitehouse Landing” is now closed. And last, but not least, the officials at Baxter State Park hate rude/drunken/entitled thru-hikers. All thru-hikers must be accompanied by a state approved adult chaperone to the top of Katahdin to ensure they do not pop a bottle of champagne at the summit (bring your mom, the dean from the last school attended, or a note from a licensed physician).

Regardless, we are still on for February 28th or March 1st, with an eye towards the weather conditions. I still haven’t seam sealed the tent (procrastination will be the death of us), but I did come up with a great recipe using Knorr Rice Sides (the beef fajita version). Bailey needs trekking poles, still, and I’m buying toe socks (Injini or SmartWool). I’m going cheap for camp shoes.

Only 7$

Only 7$

They’ll do double duty. I can use them for river/stream crossings. I’m not sure if I care to have them flopping off my backpack, but at seven bucks I can afford to toss them in the trash if they don’t work out.



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