Appalachian Trail & Outdoor Activities


Round Hill Appalachian Trail Committee

Round Hill is perfectly located between two Appalachian Trail visitor centers. Bears Den is located 5 miles to the west and the Blackburn Center is located five miles to the north. If a visitor wanted to visit both places on the same day, they would have to drive through Round Hill’s Central Commercial District. Bears Den provides a gateway connecting people to the infamous “roller coaster” section of the Appalachian Trail. Bears Den Lodge and Hostel is located in a historic stone mansion, on 66 acres of land, 150 yards from the Appalachian Trail. At 1,350 feet, the Bears Den Rocks provide a panoramic view of the Shenandoah Valley and the Blue Ridge Mountains. The westward-looking view provides a prime spot for the sunset. In 2014, about 1,900 people visited Bears Den.

The Blackburn Center is primarily designed to support: long distance hikers, trail crews, Potomac Appalachian Trail Club planning meetings, and training seminars. It is also used as a venue for special events such as weddings. Located on 150-acres of land and backing up to the Appalachian Trail, the Blackburn Center can accommodate up to 80 plus people for a day event and has indoor lodging space for 30 people with at least 30 more using tent spaces and the adjoining campground.  In 2014, about 1,000 people visited the Blackburn Center. Visitors include: day hikers, thru hikers, section hikers, boy scouts, girl scouts, and private groups.

Here is a link to the Blackburn Center

Here is a link to the Bears Den 

Here is a link to the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club

Round Hill considers the Appalachian Trail as one of its most unique assets and views the trail as an excellent opportunity to boost the local economy. The 2017 Comprehensive Plan set forth the goal to promote environmental stewardship as a mechanism to increase community viability, economic health, and sense of place in Round Hill.

The Town Council wants to increase connections between Round Hill and the Appalachian Trail to promote community awareness and increase knowledge of the trail as a local asset. The following is the Town of Round Hill’s Strategy to become a member of the Appalachian Trail Community™ national designation network.

1. Establish a Round Hill Appalachian Trail Advisory Committee made up of local Appalachian Trail volunteers and supporters.

2. Include the Appalachian Trail in Town marketing and provide educational materials at the Town Office.

3. Increase dialogue with county officials about the importance of the Appalachian Trail to Round Hill.

4. Encourage local residents to volunteer at the Bears Den and Blackburn Trail Centers.

5. Educate residents on the benefits of membership in the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club and Appalachian Trail Conservancy.

6. Maintain a partnership with Round Hill Elementary School and other local schools to encourage teachers and students to take part in Trail to Every Classroom (TTEC)

7. Incorporate Outdoors & Nature Tourism as well as Environmental Stewardship into the Town Marketing & Economic Development Programs

The Appalachian Trail Community™ program is designed to recognize communities that promote and protect the Appalachian Trail (A.T.). Towns along the A.T.’s corridor are considered assets by all that use the A.T., and many of these towns act as good friends and neighbors to the Trail. The program serves to assist communities with sustainable economic development through tourism and outdoor recreation while preserving and protecting the A.T.

The Town has held at least once a month since July 2017 with the new Round Hill Appalachian Trail Committee; also known as Round Hill Outdoors. This Committee will work together to submit the application to become an Appalachian Trail Community and develop future A.T. programs/projects.

The application to become an Appalachian Trail Community is due August 30, 2018. Round Hill Outdoors plans to submit the draft of their application to the Town Council by August 2, 2018 for their approval and resolution of support.

Here is a link to the Appalachian Trail Community Website 

Here is a link to the Appalachian Trail Community Application

Here is a link to the official website of Round Hill Outdoors 

Here is a link to the Facebook Page of Round Hill Outdoors 

“The Appalachian Trail: Art of the Adventure”

The Round Hill Appalachian Trail Committee and the Round Hill Arts Center hosted an art show entitled “The Appalachian Trail: Art of the Adventure” in February 2018. 

The purpose of the show is to broaden public awareness and appreciation of the Appalachian Trail. Artists are welcome to submit their choice of artistic expression, including paintings, drawing, photography, fiber arts, stained glass, and sculpture.  There is a separate category that welcomes submissions from young artists in grades K-12.

The Appalachian National Scenic Trail was completed on August 14, 1937. This 2,189-mile trail crosses 14 states and hosts an estimated 3 million visitors a year. This exhibit celebrated the 80th Anniversary of the completion of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail.

Submit a piece of artwork that portrays the Appalachian Trail or a symbol of the Appalachian Trail. Examples of images or symbols include:

  1. Empowering Youth
  2. Volunteers & Civic Engagement
  3. Compass, Maps & Navigation
  4. Vast Natural Beauty
  5. Priceless Cultural Heritage
  6. Connect Human Spirit with Nature
  7. Protect the Night Skies
  8. Leave No Trace
  9. Family Bonding
  10. Endurance Challenge

“The Appalachian Trail: Art of the Adventure” was on display at the Round Hill Arts Center from February 1st through March 1st, 2018. The public enjoyed an Opening Reception with live music and refreshments on February 11, 2018 from 1 pm to 4 pm.  The Arts Center is located in the Hill High Orchards complex on Route 7, west of Round Hill.

If you are interested in the 2019 Appalachian Trail Art Show, please email [email protected] 

“Round Hill Outdoors Logo Contest” 

The Town of Round Hill Committee called “Round Hill Outdoors” is conducting a logo contest. This is a new committee with the goal to promote the following in Round Hill:

  • Healthy Living
  • Active Recreation
  • Nature Education
  • Discovering Parks & Trails
  • Support the Appalachian Trail

“Round Hill Outdoors” is preparing to submit an application this Fall to the Mid-Atlantic Regional Partnership Committee of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) to designate Round Hill as an official “Appalachian Trail Community.” We will present to the ATC how Round Hill is an active living community that teaches our local youth to act as good environmental stewards, to enjoy playing outside and to strive for a healthy lifestyle. And – children who appreciate nature and being active – will love hiking. The Committee’s overall vision is that Round Hill is raising the next generation of Appalachian Trail Hikers.

We are looking for 3 to 4 logos to use this year for “Round Hill Outdoors” stationary, events, and social media; as well as part of our “Appalachian Trail Community” Application. One of the logos might be used for the Town of Round Hill marketing & tourism purposes too! 

Choose one of the following themes for your logo:

  1. Round Hill Outdoors – This logo/image should represent the goals of the Committee, specifically “environmental stewardship/nature education” & “active recreation”
  2. Round Hill & the Appalachian Trail – This logo/image should represent hiking and the Blue Ridge Mountains, specifically “support for the Appalachian Trail”
  3. Round Hill Unplugged – This logo/image should represent less screen time, and more outside time! (Ideas include promoting a healthy lifestyle, family time and enjoying the outdoors)
  4. Children’s Contest – Children 13 years old and under are welcome to create an image/drawing on an 8.5” by 11” paper that has the words “Future AT Hiker” included.

The contest is open to any individual, including but not limited to Round Hill residents. Entries will be judged by “Round Hill Outdoors.” The Committee will select top entries and any winning themes/ideas that may be used as the official logos, images or designs of “Round Hill Outdoors.

The deadline for entries is August 13, 2018 at 3 pm. Entries received after the deadline will not be accepted. For more information, please contact Melissa Hynes at [email protected]

Rules & Entry Form