2015 Friend of the Mountain Award
The 2015 Friend of the Mountain Award was presented to the Potomac Appalachain Trail Club “in recognition of their longstanding work through volunteer efforts, education, and advocacy to protect the Appalachian Trail and adjacent lands along the Mid-Atlantic section of the Blue Ridge Mountains, ever mindful of the need to conserve the natural landscape with respect for historical and cultural features.” The award was accepted on behalf of the organization by Richard Hostelley, PATC President. Through the work of thousands of volunteers PATC oversees over 1,000 miles of trail, 240 of which are a section of the Appalachain Trail running from Pine Grove Furnace in Pennsylvania to Rockfish Gap at the southern end of Shenandoah Park in Virginia. Their remarkable work includes everyday trail maintinence, construction and oversight of cabins and shelters for hikers, assisting search and rescue operations, production of guides and maps, conservation education and advocacy, workshops for hikers and the general public, and classes in CPR, backpacking, and outdoor ethics. PATC is a testament to the kind of impact and influence that can be achieved through volunteer work.