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  1. #1
    Registered User
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    04-04-2014
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    Sand Lake, Michigan
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    Default Shelter Reservations?

    Hi. I'm not sure about the shelter reservation system. I'm planning to stay in a tent. Our group of four will actually have two tents. I read a post mentioning a ridge runner checking shelter reservations. So I thought to ask. We will hopefully staying at the shelters between Watauga dam and Damascus.

  2. #2
    Registered User
    Join Date
    11-20-2002
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    Damascus, Virginia
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    Default

    there are no reservations for shelters in that area

  3. #3
    Registered User
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    Default

    Hi. Lone Wolf. You get my message?

  4. #4

    Default

    The only places you need reservations for shelters are the Smokies and Baxter state park in Maine. Everywhere else it's first come first served.

  5. #5
    Registered User The Cleaner's Avatar
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    Default

    That's not how it works.
    Sleep on the ground, rise with the sun and hike with the wind....

  6. #6
    Registered User
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    Default

    I can see why the OP might have thought this since they are from Michigan - when we hiked the Ice Age Trail in Wisconsin, you had to reserve the shelters (at least in some spots). We were surprised and confused!

    Jane

  7. #7
    Registered User
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    10-12-2002
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    Hanover, NH
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    Default

    On the A.T. other than Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Baxter Sate Park in Maine, one does not "reserve" or pre-arrange a shelter. It is strictly first come, first served, until the structure is full. It is also uncool to get there and "hold" spots for people that are expected later in the day. Because of the uncertainly of getting a spot in a shelter at day's end, this is why the prudent hiker on the A.T., either weekended, section-hiker, or long-distance hiker, always carries some kind of personal shelter, i.e. tent, tarp, bivy, hammock, etc.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    05-05-2011
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    Default

    I gets a chuckle out of hikers "racing" literally to the next shelter when its a small one that sleeps 6 and they know it will fill up.

    Heck, by barely after noon often the lazy shelter dwellers have set up camp to assure they wont have to rough it in a tent.

  9. #9

    Default

    Love my tent lol
    AT Shuttle List
    Trail Miles: 3,715.9
    AT Trips: 67
    AT Map 1 Completion: 1818.9 Springer, GA - Franconia Notch, NH
    AT Map 2 Completion: 263.8 Gaps From GA - PA

  10. #10
    GSMNP 900 Miler
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    Default

    If you are hiking the Great Smoky Mountain National Park on an AT Thru Hiker permit, you don't need reservations for the shelters there either.

    Only people hiking GSMNP with a 'General Hiker' permit must make reservations for specific dates for each camp site and shelter they plan to stay at.

    People hiking GSMNP with an 'AT Thru Hiker' permit are not committed to specific AT Shelters for specific dates. Instead, once they enter GSMNP, they have 8 days to leave, and my stay at any AT shelter in GSMNP during those 8 days.

    However, AT Thru Hikers are also required to relinquish their shelter spots to those with 'General Hiker' reservations (so you must be prepared to camp 'in the general vicinity' of the shelter).

  11. #11
    Registered User
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    Default

    Thanks for all the info. Due to my disability I find the need to stop frequently and make use of short less than ten mile days. I have done short hikes of the area already and hiked Ga to Nc just after border. But my health is slowly declining. I have to get back. Thanks again for all the assistance. I do plan to tent outside the shelters.

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