We understand that everyone is concerned about their health and wellbeing during the COVID-19 Pandemic.  We want you all to stay safe and take the precautions that make sense for your personal circumstances.  We continue to monitor the situation, and if anything changes we will provide an update here.

UPDATED 4/27/2020: We are suspending our guided trip operations through May 8, 2020 in accordance with North Carolina's Stay at Home Order.  Additionally, we are suspending our Appalachian Trail-er operations through May 31, 2020 in accordance with Madison County's Stay at Home Order.  At that time, we will re-assess the situation and provide an update.

We still believe that it is important to get outside and experience the trail, but it must be done in a safe and healthy way.  At this time, that looks different than it usually does.  Many people can explore their local trails - if they're open - and maintain 6ft distance between each other.  We do not want to encourage folks to travel long distances, pass through vulnerable communities, or overcrowd trails and trailheads.  If you choose to get outside, please do so responsibly.  We'll see you all again soon!

Original statement from 3/20/2020:

After considering the recommendations of the CDC and our state and local government officials, we have chosen to continue running our trips as scheduled!  

Not only do we believe strongly in the health benefits of being active in the outdoors, we know there are mental and emotional benefits of spending time in nature.  For families that are feeling cooped up with schools cancelled and college students home for an extended Spring Break with online classes, spending a day on the trail can be a welcome relief!  Our group sizes are intentionally small (up to 9 people for private trips), and being on trail allows us to implement the "social distancing" being recommended by the CDC.

If you are concerned about joining a group trip, we encourage you to consider a private trip instead.  Our private trips are limited to only your party and your guide.  This is a great way to get outside and have a breath of fresh air during such an uncertain time.

At this time, we are not offering transportation for our hikes.  For day hikes, we are offering private hikes only, for up to 9 people.

We have implemented additional sanitation protocols out of an abundance of caution.  In our retail shop and the Trail-er, we're wiping down hard surfaces and high-touch areas several times per day.  We are cleaning the inside of our shuttle vehicle with cleaning solution after every use.  We continue to clean all of our backpacking gear after every use.  Additionally, we are ensuring that all of our backpacking gear will not be used for 72 hours following a trip.  Our Guides and Caretaker are wearing gloves at all times when handling client backpacking gear.

If you are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 or a flu-like illness or if you have known exposure to a confirmed COVID-19 patient, please stay home!  We also recommend staying home if you are an immune compromised individual.  Contact our office as soon as possible to discuss options to cancel or reschedule your trip.

At the shop, we will be extending our winter hours through April 16, 2020.  These hours are:

  • Monday: 1p-5p
  • Tuesday: closed
  • Wednesday: closed
  • Thursday: 1p-5p
  • Friday: 11a-5p
  • Saturday: 11a-5p
  • Sunday: 11a-5p

In order to ensure that all of our customers can maintain social distance while shopping, we are welcome only one party at a time into our store.  You are welcome to make an appointment ahead of time, or drop by.  If we are already working with someone, we ask you to kindly wait outisde in our courtyard.

We plan to begin our Half Day Hiking Tours on May 1, 2020.

If you are considering cancelling or changing your travel plans, our cancellaiton policy is as follows:

  • Day Hike prices include a 15% non-refundable administrative fee.  They can be cancelled up to 1 week before the trip date for a refund (minus the 15% fee).  Within 1 week, a 50% refund will be offered.  Within 48 hours of the start of the trip, a refund will only be issued if Blue Ridge Hiking Company cancels the trip.
  • Backpacking Trip prices inlcude a 15% non-refundable administrative fee.  They can be cancelled up to 2 weeks before the trip start date for a refund (minus the 15% fee).  Within 2 weeks, a 50% refund will be offered.  Within 48 hours of the trip start, a refund will only be issued in Blue Ridge Hiking Company cancels the trip.
  • For all trips, you may reschedule your trip (within 1 year of the original trip start date) one time without any additional fees.  If you wish to reschedule your trip but do not know the new date yet, that's ok!  We will offer full store credit toward an equivalent trip scheduled within 1 year.
  • For any trip that is scheduled before the end of April, we are offering a store credit equal to the full value of your trip.  This credit can be used for trips or our online store, and is valid through December 31, 2021.