Photo Courtesy of the U.S. Forest Service and Appalachian Trail Conservancy of the Overmountain Shelter

Overmountain Shelter on Pisgah National Forest Closed Until Further Notice Due to Structural Damage

In order to protect public safety, the Appalachian Ranger District has closed the Overmountain Shelter which is located in Avery County near the Appalachian Trail (A.T.) and Overmountain Victory Trail. U.S. Forest Service engineers have determined that the building has become structurally unsound and cannot safely accommodate people.

The Overmountain Shelter was originally a barn on a private farm that was acquired by the Forest Service in 1979 and became part of the Pisgah National Forest. The Tennessee Eastman Hiking and Canoeing Club (TEHCC) converted the barn into a trail shelter for the Appalachian Trail and provided basic maintenance for the structure.

Further evaluations will occur to identify viable management options for the site. The fields around the shelter are still open for tent camping and offer beautiful views of the Roaring Creek valley. Hikers are urged to pitch their tent over 40 feet of the shelter in the event of structural failure.

Hurricane Dorian Hits Carolinas Causing Flooding in Charleston and Many Without Power

As of 8 a.m. this morning, the National Hurricane Center said that Dorian is a Category 3 storm with maximum sustained winds at 115 mph. Hurricane Dorian came through the Carolinas today bringing tropical storm conditions along the South Carolina coast, flooding Charleston and threatening the chance of tornadoes across the region.

The South Carolina Emergency Management Division reported more than 200,000 power outages across the state. Duke Energy predicted on Wednesday that the storm would cause 700,000 outages and prepared with resources from 23 states and Canada to respond once conditions are safe. Hurricane warnings were in effect for the Carolina coasts up to Virginia with a storm surge up to 8 feet around the North Carolina and South Carolina line. Experts urge people to take the storm seriously and to stay aware of it’s conditions and capabilities.

Two-thirds of all full-time employees in the United States are currently experiencing job burnout, according to a recent Gallup study. After quitting her job, Ilyssa Kyu founded Amble in hopes of helping others reconnect with nature, rejuvenate their creativity, and properly reboot themselves.

Amble, a crowd-funded start-up, organizes monthlong retreats that pair creative professionals with budget-strapped national park conservancies that support National Park Service projects, such as wildlife protection and trail rehabilitation.

“There’s the perspective that giant cliffs, immense stars and never-ending expanses of land lends you,” Kyu told the New York Times, “It forces you to put your work, daily struggles and grievances into perspective — maybe even move past them.”