Boiling Springs, Pennslyvania: An Appalachian Trail Community

The Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) is a stalwart protector of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail (AT).

The best efforts of the ATC couldn't possibly accomplish the enormous task of promoting, maintaining and preserving the AT, so they wisely enlisted the help of other loyal allies through the Appalachian Trail Community(TM) program.

Appalachian Trail Communities work with the ATC to promote and protect one of America's most treasured assets. One such community is Boiling Springs, Pennsylvania.

Back in 2006, residents of Boiling Springs met for the Appalachian Trail Gateway Community Forum. The forum drew 125 people to address common issues and concerns related to the AT, adjacent communities and landscapes. Ed McMahon from the Urban Land Institute discussed how communities can protect their unique character.

That meeting, among others, culminated in Boiling Springs being designated an Appalachian Trail Community.

The ATC's website says designation and participation in the program has these goals:

  • Engage community citizens, trail visitors and stewards
  • Recognize and thank communities for their service to the trail and hikers
  • Act as a catalyst for enhancing sustainable economic development
  • Aid local municipalities and regional areas with conservation planning
  • Help local community members see the trail as a resource and asset

The significance of Boiling Springs is considerable. For example, it is home to the ATC's Mid-Atlantic Regional Office. Their Information Center includes:

  • An information desk where a staff member is available to answer questions about hiking the AT.
  • Trail club brochures, hand-outs, local maps, and a reference library.
  • Gift shop selling guidebooks, postcards, mid-Atlantic region AT hiker maps, and ATC memberships.
  • White gas and denatured alcohol stove fuels are available for a small donation.
  • Front porch bulletin board (think: ancient website) with the regional FAQ document, hikers' info, and Trail register.
  • On summer weekends volunteers offer information and assistance on the front porch from 8-ish to 4-ish.
  • Water faucet on south side of building (unavailable during coldest months of winter).
  • Passport To Your National Parks(R) Cancellation Station. We provide the NPS passport stamp to record your visit to the Appalachian National Scenic Trail.

The local post office, convenience stores, an ATM, lodging, a hiker-friendly restaurant, and the municipal swimming pool with showers (Memorial Day - Labor Day) are nearby.

The Appalachian Trail and the fine folks in Boiling Springs, PA, go together like gorp and pure water after a long day's hike.

Click Here for Appalachian Trail Communities

Click Here for ATC Office in Boiling Springs, PA

About the Author Robert Sutherland:
Robert Sutherland is a travel writer enjoying life. Robert has two adult daughters and six grandchildren.
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