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What we’re about

PATC hikes are an opportunity to understand the club and its important trail maintenance work. You do not need to be a PATC member to hike with us, but we hope you will consider joining after getting to know us. Come join us on the trails!

(PATC hikes are conducted by trained hike leaders. The hikes offer various levels of difficulty and distance).



The Potomac Appalachian Trail Club (PATC) is a 100% Volunteer-Supported 501c3 non-profit formed in 1927 for the purpose of building and maintaining the Appalachian Trail (AT), a 2190-mile footpath from Maine to Georgia, the longest hiking-only trail in the world.

We are the Trail Guardians for over 1000 miles of trails in Pennsylvania, Maryland, West Virginia & Virginia, including 240 miles of AT. Our territory begins in Central Pennsylvania at Pine Grove Furnace, continues thru Maryland & West Virginia to Harpers Ferry and extends into the mid-point of Virginia, including the Shenandoah National Park. In addition, we maintain other regional trails, for a total of over 1,000 miles of trails, thousands of acres of land and more than 80 shelters and cabins.



The first stated purpose of PATC is "to support and encourage the ... proper recreational use of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail and other trails". This is done partly through the sponsorship of hikes on trails in PATC's area and on other trails. 

The club has a wide-ranging hiking program which includes local area hikes and excursions into other geographical areas. Hikes can range from short, close-in day hikes to extended excursions. Hikes can be for physical conditioning, social interaction, nature walks, history lessons, to reach a viewpoint, or any of a number of purposes. The club encourages a wide variety of hikes, and provides training and support to hike leaders.

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