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  1. #281
    Registered User A-Train's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Tarlin View Post
    First off, which old timey veteran thru-hikers are you referring to?

    As for the annual guides, with the exception of AWOL's recent book (which was actually quite correct in being circumspect about this matter), the guides printed what they believed to be true, i.e. that camping in the woods in the trees beyond the soccer field was perfectly OK. They printed this in the belief that it was true as neither town officials, USFS people, police officers, or anyone else seemed bothered if folks camped there up til now.

    If the hiker guidebooks didn't tell people NOT to camp here, well, it was because they had no reason to tell people this. Up til very recently it wasn't an issue. I'm sure future editions will contain more accurate information, once it is actually known what the rules/regulations are.
    Relax Jack, the comment about veteran thru-hikers was not a shot at you, OK, so don't be defensive? Not everyone here is trying to pick a fight with you. Did you not see the smiley face? My point was simply that if all the guidebooks printed that the campsite was no longer open, most first-time hikers would probably abide, but you've always got a few old timers who are gonna have a hard time following NEW RULES when they have fond memories of how things used to be. Didn't have anyone in mind.

    As for the 2nd part, again, not sure you understood me. I wasn't blaming any of the guides, nor have I seen any of them in the last couple years. I also wasn't blaming any local officials. Simply, IMO, the authors should start printing that camping is prohibited, if that is what the townsfolks want. Because of recent issues, the place should be closed. I'm glad to hear this location doesn't have a history of being trashed, but it seems welcoming hikers to camp on the edge of town may yield issues and the seasoned hiker should figure out how to get thru town without this spot.
    Anything's within walking distance if you've got the time.
    GA-ME 03, LT 04/06, PCT 07'

  2. #282
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    Actually, no, I didn't see the smiley face. Are you sure you included one?

    And in any case, whoever your remark had in mind, I'm not sure I'd refer to these people as "rule breakers" because for years, nobody thought that they were breaking any rules in camping by the field:

    *It was never signed or posted.
    *The local Trail club, the DOC, made no effort to tell people that camping there was
    forbidden.
    *Neither at the Trailhead, nearby shelters, or anywhere else were there ever any signs
    advising people against camping here.
    *The hiker bulletin board in the DOC office, a place visited by nearly every thru-hiker,
    never contained an admonishment or warning about camping here.
    *The local police were perfectly aware that people camped here and it didn't bother them
    in the slightest, in fact, they preferred that people stayed there rather than on in campus,
    in the cemetary, etc. The police, in fact, would refer people to the "soccer field"
    campsites and told some hikers how to get there.
    *College officials only cared about this if people tented ON the field itself; if people were in
    the nearby woods, they didn't give a damn.

    In short, then, people that stayed here previously, whether they were veteran thru-hikers
    or not, may have been staying in areas they shouldn't have been, but they were not
    consciously breaking any rules as they had absolutely no reason to believe they were doing anything improper. It's hard to be considered a "rule breaker" when you don't know that you're breaking a rule.

    In future, if the area is clearly posted by the Forest Service, then there will be no doubt, and people not wishing to be rule or law breakers would be well advised to stay somewhere else.

    But the people who have stayed here over the years, or encouraged other people to do so, were doing nothing wrong. This spot was a great resource for many years and I'm very sorry the Forest Service has evidently decided to shut it down.

  3. #283

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    Ignorance of the law is no excuse. Where's Weasey when you need him. Daqmned rule breakers.

    Clyde

  4. #284

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    Two comments from an outsider.

    1. If you can convince curves to offer single day memberships for a reasonable price, it would solve the shower problem for the female hikers.

    2. If you are really worried that you or someone else didn't actually hike the ATC because you walked down the street on the left side walk instead of the right one, you really need to take up some sort of hobby to relax. I find long walks in the woods relaxes me and tend to make me less compulsive.

  5. #285

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    Jack,

    Thanks for the update. The A.T. is fortunate to have a person who is so knowledgeable and articulate about the Trail to represent the hiker perspective in the town of Hanover.

    Laurie P.
    ATC

  6. #286

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    Hey folks. Just wanted to update everyone regarding the Hanover happenings. My neighbor Larry continues to be very active in exploring ways to improve hiker services and hiker experiences in Hanover, and ensure that Hanover has the reputation as a friendly Trail town. To these ends, a local group deemed "Friends of the AT" has been formed and has met with some frequency. The Friends group has focused on a couple of major areas: education ( of locals re: the AT and hikers, and of hikers re: Hanover and what services are where), and hiker services.

    There has been a few developments in the area of education. A month or so ago the Friends sponsored a showing of the AT video "Trek" and had four thru hikers do a question and answer session afterwards. The event was at the public library and was very well attended - about 100 people from the community attended. Discussion afterwards was lively. Also in the arena of education, a Hanover info flier has been created and will be in the nearby shelters and available in town.

    There is also some good news with regards to services. Shower and laundry will be available for hikers in the community center near the little Co-op. The shower will cost $3 and laundry is...$2 or 2.50 per load (slips my mind right now). Although not officially open yet, word is a few hikers have already used them. Sweet!

    Well, more is going on and I'll update as initiatives come to fruition. I hope everyone is having a great hiking season. Please continue to give feedback on ways the hiker's Hanover experience can be improved. Take care.

    - MM.
    aka Endorphin, AT GA->ME '04

  7. #287

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    Thanks for the update, MileMonster!
    Drab as a Fool, as aloof as a Bard!

    http://www.wizardsofthepct.com

  8. #288

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    Quote Originally Posted by MileMonster View Post
    There is also some good news with regards to services. Shower and laundry will be available for hikers in the community center near the little Co-op. The shower will cost $3 and laundry is...$2 or 2.50 per load (slips my mind right now). Although not officially open yet, word is a few hikers have already used them. Sweet!
    That is really fantastic news. The people in Hanover don't have to go out of their way to accommodate hikers (and don't even need to) and to see that they are doing this is pretty impressive. Everyone I talked to while in Hanover was very helpful, more than just friendly and polite, so this doesn't surprise me at all.

  9. #289

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    I read the first six pages and want to pick up on one of Jack's ideas--the one about having some sort of gathering in August, when a number of hikers would be in Hanover.

    It sounds as if the town will make some improvements to help hikers while they're in town. Maybe there are some positive things small groups of hikers can do for Hanover--a few hours of work in a town park or playground or something along those lines. If this could be done in cooperation with the DOC, so much the better.

    Patronizing town businesses is a good thing, but helping in a more personal and obvious way could strengthen the relationship further.

  10. #290

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    Front page article in the local paper today.

    http://www.vnews.com/07312010/6879972.htm

    - MM
    aka Endorphin, AT GA->ME '04

  11. #291
    PCT, Sheltowee, Pinhoti, LT , BMT, AT, SHT, CDT 560 miles 10-K's Avatar
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    I liked Hanover so much I took a zero there. Got a great rate ($100 per night)* at the Hanover Inn, ate calzones from the pizza place, coffee from the Dirt Cowboy and breakfast at Lou's. Shopped at the co-op, shipped some stuff home from the PO, used the library for internet - all wthin easy walking distance. As an aside - I don't see how you could get lost, even without the new blazing.

    Icing on the cake: A local I met and talked to for a few minutes took me all the way out to Best Buy to pick up a replacement digital camera because mine had gotten soaked and quit working.

    * $100 per night isn't cheap and is $43 more than I paid for a room in Gorham but it was worth the additional $43 IMO.

  12. #292

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    The showers and washer/dryer at the rec center are great additions for the hikers passing thru town. However, I believe it is only open Mon thru Fri this year.
    Order your copy of the Appalachian Trail Passport at www.ATPassport.com

    Green Mountain House Hostel
    Manchester Center, VT

    http://www.greenmountainhouse.net

  13. #293

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    Quote Originally Posted by MileMonster View Post
    Front page article in the local paper today.

    http://www.vnews.com/07312010/6879972.htm

    - MM
    Great article!
    Drab as a Fool, as aloof as a Bard!

    http://www.wizardsofthepct.com

  14. #294
    Registered User DickHumbird's Avatar
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    Default This town is terrible

    I'm in Hanover right now, two days after the front-page article about how hiker-friendly some residents [and the Chamber of Commerce] want the town to be.

    Hanover has a long, long way to go.

    I hiked 16 miles in [because stopping at Happy Hill Shelter at 1:30 p.m. seemed not my style] and got here in the afternoon. Mountain Goat tried to track down a place where thru-hikers have been staying but no dice. Then they were like, there's a lot of trail angels in town. But it's informal. Translation: You're either in the right place at the right time and meet the right person or you're SOL.

    The shower is apparently open to everyone, not just hikers, and there's just one shower. The place closes at 5 p.m. and is .4 or so away from the town center, so it's an extra .8 if you're the kind of person who likes to shower first, sup second. As for the laundry, they were like, 'it's 4 o'clock. too late. can you come back tomorrow?'

    That's the thing. I asked a room full of DOC kids where to stay. 'officially, we tell people the velvet rocks shelter.'

    O----kay. Translation: eat your free slice of pizza and get the hell out. Thanks!

    I dunno what else to say. I hiked through here last year, too, and had an absolutely miserable time, although I spent the hell out of some money here. In the 2,000-mile awards, I gave Hanover the dishonorable mention for trail town. I don't see any reason to amend that this time.
    Ink, WV->ME '09, GA->WV '10, People's Republic of Walk

  15. #295

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    Well, I loved Hanover. Got in late on a Wednesday, and spent 3 nites (2 full zero days) which is longest I stayed in any trail town.

    If you don't like the town you can blame your fellow thruhikers. We used to have a free hostel at a church - had the basement to ourselves - and free showers. But thruhikers used and abused the church so this resource was lost to us.

    I think its great that the town is reaching out once again to hikers. Showers and laundry are a good start.

  16. #296

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    The people of Hanover are making an honest effort to improve amenities for hiker. It's a work in progress.

    Hard to believe you are complaining about hiking an extra 0.4 miles for a shower. We have all hiked more than that to water sources off trail.

    The location is perfect for southbounders as well as northbounders who plan to camp past the soccer field or the nearby Velvet Rocks Shelter.
    Last edited by Jeff; 08-02-2010 at 18:41.
    Order your copy of the Appalachian Trail Passport at www.ATPassport.com

    Green Mountain House Hostel
    Manchester Center, VT

    http://www.greenmountainhouse.net

  17. #297
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    Default The Year's Finest Whine

    Dick H.

    Lemme get this right, I sure wouldn't want to mis-quote any of your complaints:

    1. The town, at its own expense, puts in a spotlessly clean, very reasonably priced public
    shower and laundry facility. There is a nominal expense for this which barely covers
    the associated expenses.

    You are peeved that it's "apparently open for everyone", i.e., God forbid, cyclists, other
    travellers, even, amazingly enough, local residents who might have the effrontery to
    actually use a facility that they are subsidizing and paying for. So what's up, here,
    Dick, you think it should be open to card-carrying thru-hikers only? Please explain
    yourself, but yeah, it's a public facility and is open to everyone and by God, sorry,
    they only paid for one shower. Horrors!!

    2. Yeah, the community center is indeed a few blocks out of town. Sorry, but I guess my
    friends in town who took the initiative to get this shower and laundry thing together
    couldn't find a way to put it on Main St. or the town green, or maybe 20 yards from
    your favorite restaurant. Ooh, what an extraordinary hardship this must have been
    for you.

    So let's see, you had to walk like .4 to get to the facility and back to town.

    Seems to me that this takes a healthy hiker around four minutes, so sorry you were
    so brutally inconvenienced.

    3. The facility closes at 5. A load of laundry takes around an hour and a half, so you
    obviously got there too late in the day to do a full load. Every laundromat I know has
    posted operating hours.......you get there too late in the day, then you don't get to
    clean your underwear and socks. Gosh, what a difficult concept. Or were you perhaps
    expecting this place to be open round the clock?

    4. Yes, the folks at the Dartmouth Outing Club, when asked, refer people to the nearby
    Velvet Rocks shelter. Sorry......what seems to be the problem with this? 99% of
    long distance hikers know all about their various options......they can get a motel
    room; they can stay at Velvet Rocks; they can skip staying in Hanover altogether.

    Oh, they can also camp for free on a nice clean safe campsite on the edge of town.

    Sorry none of this was good enough for you and the folks at the DOC let you down.
    Tell me, did you expect them to take you home with them?

    5. As to being SOL when it comes to a place to stay, as explained above, there are lots
    of places to stay. Yeah, there's no hostel right in town; this is also true of lots of
    other Trail towns, but somehow, other folks manage to deal with this.

    So in closing, nobody's saying "Eat your pizza and leave." On the contrary, the folks in Hanover do more for hikers than folks in plenty of Trail towns. (Like where else do you get free pizza for example?)

    Your post comes off as whiny and entitled. Sorry, but it really does. No Trail town has to put up a bath-house that's open til midnight (right downtown) so you're not inconvenienced; no Trail town is supposed to supply free lodging or anything else. Nobody's obligated to open a cheap or free bunkhouse for itinerant hikers.

    Oh, in case you noticed, hikers spend money in all sorts of places over a six month hike. It doesn't entitle them to convenient, cheap, or free services.

    Lastly, you're right. There are absolutely some local Trail angels that help people out or crash them out on an informal basis, i.e. they're not "official" hostels; they're not always open or available, they don't advertise their services, and you can't always count on their being around or open when it's convenient for you. For this reason, they're not in any of the guides. But there are plenty of people in Hanover who open their hearts and homes to hikers and they're happy to do it.

    How fortunate they are that none of them encountered you this past weekend; whatever they did for you I'm sure couldn't have possibly been enough.

  18. #298

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    Quote Originally Posted by DickHumbird View Post
    I'm in Hanover right now, two days after the front-page article about how hiker-friendly some residents [and the Chamber of Commerce] want the town to be.

    Hanover has a long, long way to go.

    I hiked 16 miles in [because stopping at Happy Hill Shelter at 1:30 p.m. seemed not my style] and got here in the afternoon. Mountain Goat tried to track down a place where thru-hikers have been staying but no dice. Then they were like, there's a lot of trail angels in town. But it's informal. Translation: You're either in the right place at the right time and meet the right person or you're SOL.

    The shower is apparently open to everyone, not just hikers, and there's just one shower. The place closes at 5 p.m. and is .4 or so away from the town center, so it's an extra .8 if you're the kind of person who likes to shower first, sup second. As for the laundry, they were like, 'it's 4 o'clock. too late. can you come back tomorrow?'

    That's the thing. I asked a room full of DOC kids where to stay. 'officially, we tell people the velvet rocks shelter.'

    O----kay. Translation: eat your free slice of pizza and get the hell out. Thanks!

    I dunno what else to say. I hiked through here last year, too, and had an absolutely miserable time, although I spent the hell out of some money here. In the 2,000-mile awards, I gave Hanover the dishonorable mention for trail town. I don't see any reason to amend that this time.
    Dude...your life SUCKS!

  19. #299
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    People are usually a lot more friendly towards people they like.

  20. #300
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    Good one, though!

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