The US Forest Service has announced new restrictions on Max Patch, a national forest area near the Tennessee state line in Madison County that includes a section of the Appalachian Trail. The 1,629 m high bare mountain, just a short drive from Hot Springs, is a popular camping and backpacking destination known for its panoramic views. The trail saw a visitor explosion in 2020.
These new restrictions are designed to reduce the impact on natural resources and protect public health and safety, according to the forest service.
The following rules apply immediately:
- No Camping.
- No fire.
- The area closes one hour after sunset and reopens one hour before sunrise. Visitors prohibited during closing times.
- Group size limited to 10.
- Dogs and other animals must be kept on a leash with a maximum length of 1.80 m or in a box or cage.
- Stay on designated paths.
- Aircraft are not allowed to land, land or take off in this area. Drones are prohibited on the Appalachian Trail.
- No fireworks.
- Bicycles are only allowed to stay on the streets.
- Horses and other saddle and pack animals may not be ridden, chained, tied up or hobbled in this area.
These rules apply until June 30th, 2023.
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