Appalachian Trail trailheads closed in WNC

Despite social distancing guidelines, large crowds have continued to flock to the Appalachian Trail, forcing the U.S. Forest Service to close trailhead access in Pisgah and Nantahala National Forests in North Carolina and Cherokee National Forest in Tennessee. 

The sites impacted by the most recent closures include:

  • Max Patch- Cherokee and Pisgah National Forests
  • Roan Mountain/ Carvers Gap- Cherokee and Pisgah National Forests
  • Lovers Leap- Pisgah National Forest
  • Wayah Bald- Nantahala National Forest
  • Cheoah Bald- Nantahala National Forest
  • Hampton and Dennis Cove Trailheads (Laurel Falls)- Cherokee National Forest
  • Osborne Farm- Cherokee National Forest

(Source: Asheville Citizen Times)

Brevard-based SylvanSport shifts focus from manufacturing campers to life-saving PPE

Tom Dempsey, president of RV manufacturer SylvanSport, has shifted from making campers in his Brevard, NC facility to producing personal protection equipment for medical personnel working on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic. “We make campers. We’re not saving the world,” Dempsey told the Citizen Times. “So, we said really early, let’s be responsible.” 

In addition to manufacturing PPE, Dempsey has also been able to procure N95 masks from one of his suppliers in China, which he delivered to Hendersonville Pediatrics. The unique campers he builds are also coming in handy as rapid deployable shelters, the Citizen Times reports, with health care providers using them as triage stations before bringing patients into their offices. 

West Virginians can fish free for a month

West Virginia is under a shelter in place order, but Governor Jim Justice won’t let that stop you from fishing. The governor has announced that WV residents can enjoy a month of free fishing, valid until April 24. The requirement to possess a fishing license to fish in state regulated waters has been waived for WV residents, though anglers are required to practice social distancing. 

All fishing regulations remain in place, including bag limits, slot limits, catch-and-release areas, and fly-fishing only areas. The waiver also includes trout and conservation stamps. All requirements for hunting licenses remain in effect. 

Photo of AT sign from Getty Images

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