Pennsylvania Part 3 – The A.T. Museum

HikeItForward-Final-MediumPennsylvania holds the Half Way Point of the Appalachian Trail (mile 1,093) The mile maker is aptly located in the midst of forest trail and not in the middle of a trail town or even at the shelter. It is about 4 miles north of The Birch Run Shelter and 1.1 miles south of Toms Run Shelter.

Mid-pointThere is an Appalachian Trail Museum. It is located about two miles north of the half-way point in Pine Grove Furnace State Park, PA. Being halfway between Maine and Georgia, the Museum is appropriately housed in a building that is itself a historical artifact, a structure built more than two hundred years ago as a grist mill. It stands across the road from the Pine Grove General Store, the location of the famed “ice cream challenge

Hikers are welcome to bring food and eat outside the museum while they relax from the rigors of the trail. Inside there are artifacts of pioneer hikers, thru-hiker photos from the last 30 years, and signs from Springer to Katahdin. Open on weekends in the spring and fall and daily from noon to 4:00 PM Memorial Day to Labor Day (www.atmuseum.org)

Museum 1Current exhibits include a trail shelter that was built by hiker legend Earl Shaffer. The shelter was replaced on the trail with a more modern one and the original was painstakingly disassembled and then reassembled in the new Museum. In addition, there are artifacts that belonged to other hiking pioneers such as Grandma Gatewood, the first woman to thru-hike the trail (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grandma_Gatewood);  Gene Espy, recognized as the second person to thru-hike the AT in 1951 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gene_Espy);  and Ed Garvey, who made his first thru-hike in 1971 published a book about his adventure, Appalachian Hiker, which did a great deal in raising awareness of backpacking and long trail hiking (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_B._Garvey). In the museum computers display the more than 12,000 photos that have been taken of thru-hikers as they reached Harpers Ferry on their journeys either north or south. There is also a children’s discovery area and hiker welcoming areas.

Photo of half-way sign found at  http://www.panoramio.com/photo/22509511

Appalachian Trail Museum ~~ Photograph by Robert Sutherland found at http://appalachiantrail.com/20130722/help-wanted-manager-of-at-museum/

Categories: Appalachian Trail, Appalachian Trail Museum, Backpack, Georgia, Maine, Pennsylvania, Thru-Hike, Trail | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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One thought on “Pennsylvania Part 3 – The A.T. Museum

  1. Pingback: The A.T. Hall of Fame | Hike It Forward

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