Is anyone on the Mountains-to-Sea Trail today?

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This is not a good time to be on the Mountains-to-Sea Trail. Hurricane Sandy is affecting almost every section of the MST. If hikers are trying to complete the MST this year, I wish them luck.

Right now, Clingmans Dome is encased in snow. Newfound Gap Road in Great Smoky Mountains National Park is closed. A picture is floating around Facebook showing Newfound Gap in an early Christmas scene. For the latest on road conditions in the Smokies, sign up for tweets at http://twitter.com/smokiesroadsnps

The Blue Ridge Parkway is closed in many areas, both east and west of Asheville. The Parkway doesn’t need much excuse to close. Of course, the MST never closes but it’s not too convenient to get on and off the MST when cars can’t reach you. It’s best to call 828-298-0398 for road conditions on the Parkway. This recording is updated at least once a day.

This might be a good time to focus on walking the Piedmont, though it’s probably raining in the Triangle area.

The whole Outer Banks is closed. Cape Hatteras National Seashore closed a couple of days ago. So did Jockey’s Ridge State Park. Parts of NC 12 are flooded and closed. They’ve closed the Bonner Bridge.

I was in the Outer Banks in September, doing some last minute fact checking for my forthcoming book, The Mountains-to-Sea Trail across North Carolina. I saw the devastation of Hurricane Irene and now they have another storm. How do residents deal with these hurricanes that seem to hit them almost yearly?

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