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  1. #1
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    Default Thomas Knob Shelter

    Info, questions, comments, experiences (good or bad) regarding - Thomas Knob Shelter

    Past/Present hikers - what can future hikers expect here? Have any good stories or memories from here?

    Future hikers - any questions?

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  2. #2
    Addicted Hiker and Donating Member Hammock Hanger's Avatar
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    Bautiful,large 2 story shelter. Back in 93, I was hiking north the wind was so bad that it was throwing me around like a piece of toilet paper. I got to the shelter around lunch. Some sobo hikers came in and said the wind keep knocking them down face first it was so strong. We all had lunch, more folks came in with their stories... No onewanted to go back out, it was a COLD wind as well. We all ended up staying and by early evening the shelter was packed. Next day I talked with a ranger who said some of the winds had been clocked at @ 75mph. There is also a nice rock haslf way between the shelter and the water hole to watch the sunset. HH
    Hammock Hanger -- Life is my journey and I'm surely not rushing to the "summit"...:D

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  3. #3
    GA-ME 3/5/02 -8/14/02
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    A really nice privy, great views from the water source, and the night we were here, a deer practically came into the shelter they came so close! You can watch the wild ponies from the water source if you're lucky...great shelter right before Grayson HIghlands....
    "It's a dangerous business, going out your door...if you don't keep your feet, there's no telling where you might be swept off to."-The Hobbit

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    See my picture of weather in May at Thomas Knob! It's in the gallery.
    "Thank God! there is always a Land of Beyond, For us who are true to the trail..." --- Robert Service

  5. #5
    Registered User fivefour's Avatar
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    We stayed here 2/24/06 and found the shelter full of trash. Clothing, tarps, flashlights and lots of food wrappers. We hiked out what we could (no fires are allowed at this shelter due to a rare salamander that lives around fallen wood) but there was still some left. Anyone hiking to this shelter anytime soon might want to carry an extra trash bag and maybe even a new broom. The one there currently has sticks duct taped to the broom as a handle.
    "In the woods, too, a man casts off his years, as the snake his slough, and at what period soever of life, is always a child. In the woods is perpetual youth." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

  6. #6
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    That shelter really sucks. I heard thru the grapvine that it's going to be taken down.

  7. #7
    LT '79; AT '73-'14 in sections; Donating Member Kerosene's Avatar
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    Are there tent sites in the vicinity of this shelter?
    GA←↕→ME: 1973 to 2014

  8. #8
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    About .5 north of the shelter are great camp sites.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by L. Wolf
    That shelter really sucks. I heard thru the grapvine that it's going to be taken down.
    you're joking, right?

  10. #10
    Registered User D'Artagnan's Avatar
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    I posted a photo today of Thomas Knob Shelter I took 7/2/05. It seemed to be in pretty good shape then. I'm sure it gets a lot of activitity because of its proximity to the summit of Mt. Rogers and its distance from Massie Gap/Grayson Highlands. I really enjoy that area. (YMMV)
    Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by mingo
    you're joking, right?
    No joke. I heard it at MRO recently.

  12. #12
    GA-VA '04 500 MILES, VA-PA '05 600 MILES lost & found's Avatar
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    I spent the night there as the last night of a 500 mile hike that started at Springer. It was the last day of July 2004 and was the coldest night I spent on the trail. I've been in colder weather, but with cold weather clothing. I only had summer weight clothes and sleeping bag. The temp got down into the 30s and the wind was also howling in the 30s.

    Plan on having cold weather gear with you for that shelter or plan on shivering.
    Lost & Found
    GA-VA '04, VA-PA '05, PA-VT '06

  13. #13
    •Completed A.T. Section Hike GA to ME 1996 thru 2003 •Donating Member Skyline's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by L. Wolf
    No joke. I heard it at MRO recently.

    LW,

    Will it be replaced by a new shelter like they did with Raccoon Branch > Hurricane, or will there simply be no shelter between Lost Mt. & Wise? (Not that it would be a bad thing...)

    If the answer is they aren't going to build a replacement shelter, maybe some permanent groupings of tentsites fenced in to keep the livestock out? With a water source nearby, privy or designated latrine area, and possibly a picnic table, that would work as well or better than a new shelter. I bet we could both suggest some good locations.

    Actually, this rumor is strange because I heard last Fall that they were going to replace the solar privy with a mouldering privy at Thomas Knob. Or maybe that was the strange rumor. It's just all too strange.

  14. #14

    Default campsites closer to the water

    Kerosene:

    Just past the shelter about .1 mile as you head N, look down to the right by some big rock outcrops. There are good tent sites in the grass on the same contour as the shelter's spring. Fantastic view and easy walk to the spring. The ones Lone Wolf mentioned offer more shelter and shade with good access to the views.

  15. #15
    LT '79; AT '73-'14 in sections; Donating Member Kerosene's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info, L. Wolf and bobgessner57. We'll be SOBO in mid-June and see which site works best for us.
    GA←↕→ME: 1973 to 2014

  16. #16
    Registered User fivefour's Avatar
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    there are quite a few campsites in that area. i wish we had chosen to use one of those instead of the shelter but the wind was HOWLING. and about the privy ... i have yet to see one that dirty. i don't want to get into details but we all chose to travel onward the next morning w/o a visit.

    i think the shelter still has plenty of life in it. it just needs a little TLC.
    "In the woods, too, a man casts off his years, as the snake his slough, and at what period soever of life, is always a child. In the woods is perpetual youth." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

  17. #17

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    there's nothing wrong with that shelter. it's really needed, i think, because of the damn wind up there. if they took it down, that'd be a pretty long haul between wise and lost mtn -- 18 miles, right?

  18. #18
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    There's plenty of woods in lower elevations between lost Mtn. and Wise to pitch a tent. Thomas Knob needs to come down.

  19. #19

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    Mount Rogers sort of collects bad weather (being the tallest thing around, I suppose). I stayed in Thomas Knob with a big group of thru-hikers last May. It was cold, windy and occasionally spitting hail. The next morning was the same, but after walking less than a mile we were in sunshine being panhandled by the ponies. Looking back over our shoulders, we could see Rogers (and the shelter) still wrapped in the clouds. Bypassing it for a tent site might get you better weather . . .

    SOBO after Thomas Knob you lose elevation quickly on the AT and get back into the woods. NOBO you will be above treeline for miles (the Grayson Highlands = WINDY and beautiful) after passing Thomas Knob, but you can duck down side trails into the woods.
    Jaywalke
    SW Virginia

  20. #20
    •Completed A.T. Section Hike GA to ME 1996 thru 2003 •Donating Member Skyline's Avatar
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    Just a few hundred feet south of the blue-blaze to the old Deep Gap Shelter spring is a side trail to some great camping spots. It's low enough in elevation to not be as windy as Thomas Knob, and are somewhat protected by trees. There is also a nice fire ring (fires not permitted at Thomas Knob). If there WAS going to be a replacement shelter built between Lost Mt. & Wise I'd think this would be a good location--but personally I think leaving it as tentsites (maybe modestly improved) would be better.You can still get water from the aforementioned spring, which is piped and great BTW.

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