Our Trails Organization

The PATC Trails organization maintains approximately 1000 miles of public hiking trails under cooperative agreements with our government partners.


  • Keep the trails for which we are obligated maintained to appropriate standards, including the Appalachian Trail and side trails in:
    • Shenandoah National Park (SNP)
    • George Washington & Jefferson National Forest (GW&JNF)
    • Sleepy Creek Wildlife Management Area (SCWMA)
    • Harpers Ferry National Historic Park (HFNHP)
    • South Mountain Recreation Area (SMRA)
    • Michaux State Forest (MSF)
    • Rock Creek Park (RCP)
    • Great Falls Park (GFP)
    • Washington, D.C.
    • Prince William Forest Park (PWFP)
    • Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania National Historic Park (F&SNHP)
    • Suburban Virginia and Maryland
  • Ensure the safety of PATC trails volunteers by providing adequate training and safety equipment.

Trail Maintainer

  • Inspects assigned trail segment at least once per month during the summer months.

November through March, trails should be inspected at least once every 60 days.

  • Performs routine trail maintenance to maintain the trail to appropriate standards.

This includes clipping, trash removal, re-blazing, removal of small or medium blowdowns, maintaining treadway, and building or cleaning waterbars.

  • Informs District Manager of any condition that is beyond overseer's ability to correct.

These may include large blowdowns, bridge washouts, or major erosion of treadway.

  • Submits work reports for work performed on the trail segment at least quarterly.

All Fiscal Year reports must be submitted by October 1st, when PATC must submit work hour reports to government partners.

Trail Crew Leader

  • Performs trail work projects that are beyond the capabilities of responsible overseers
  • Communicates with the District Manager of the district in which work is planned
  • Ensures that the District Manager approves of the proposed work project. Any materials required should be supported by the District Manager's budget

District Manager

  • Represents PATC in trail-related matters with government partners in the assigned district.

District Managers are the primary points of contact with their respective government partners.

  • Supports, communicates with, and supervises maintainers in the district.
  • Replaces maintainers when necessary.
  • Recruit maintainers when vacancies occur.
  • Prepares input to the annual Trails budget and maintain expenses within budget during the fiscal year.
  • Support maintainers when a trail condition exists that is beyond the maintainerr's ability to correct or improve.

This could include large blowdowns, erosion control, or bridge construction.

  • Coordinates and approve the proposed work of all ad hoc work crews (such as the Mid-Atlantic, Acme Treadway Company, Cadillac, Blue & White, Stonewall Brigade, & Hoodlums crews) in the district.

If appropriate, inform the government partner of work crew activity

  • Informs Supervisor of Trails of potential problems and policy matters of interest involving government partners, work crews, or maintainers in the district.

Trails Coordinator (PATC staff)

  • Supports the Supervisor of Trails as appropriate to meet PATC trails management objectives.
  • Maintains trail work records and files.
  • Oversees the Tool Room volunteers.
  • Coordinates trail sign preparation and distribution.
  • Represents the Supervisor of Trails in non-policy matters.
  • Coordinates the seasonal trail crews.

Supervisor of Trails

  • Represents PATC in trail-related matters with government partners, the Appalachian Trail Conference (ATC), and other government agencies as required.
  • Provides guidance and direction to the Trails Coordinator.
  • Supports and communicate with PATC District Managers.
  • Supports and communicate with PATC Trail Crew Leaders.
  • Recruits District Managers when vacancies occur.
  • Replaces District Managers when necessary.
  • Prepares the annual PATC Trails budget and monitor expenses during the fiscal year.