Volunteer Opportunities on the Blue Ridge Ranger District

Photo of mountains from Brasstown Bald in the summer. Green mountains and blue sky with white, puffy clouds.

The Chattahoochee National Forest with 750,000 acres, 10 wilderness areas, 1,367 miles of trout streams, and 430 miles of hiking trails is a nature lover’s paradise in Georgia. Breathtaking views, blue skies, and clear streams are the qualities that draw people to the North Georgia Mountains. The Blue Ridge District is located in the mountain counties of Fannin, Lumpkin, Gilmer, Towns, and Union. Volunteers are needed to help with a variety of projects on the District.


More Ways to Volunteer

Trail Maintenance

There are many other ways to volunteer on the Blue Ridge Ranger District. Trail maintenance is one such volunteer opportunity. The District has several organized trail clubs who help maintain a wide range of trail types. These groups welcome folks who would like to help out on one of their regular workdays, or who might be interested in becoming a club member. Below is a list of these groups and their contact information:

The Georgia Appalachian Trail Club (GATC)
The GATC helps manage, maintain and protect the Appalachian National Scenic Trail and associated connecting trails in Georgia, utilizing volunteers from its membership and the interested public. Educational and recreation activities of the GATC focus on conservation ethics and protection of the forest resource.
Contact: president@georgia-atclub.org
Website: www.georgia-atclub.org
Voice Mail: (404) 494-0968


The Benton Mackaye Trail Association (BMTA) 
The BMTA helps manage and maintain the Benton Mackaye Trail, a long-distance route of over 300 miles in Georgia and Tennessee. They welcome help from interested individuals or groups.
Website: www.bmta.org
Use the “Contact Us” link on their website to express interest, and they will respond to you.


The Mountain High Hikers (MHH) 
The MHH help manage and maintain a variety of trails in both the Chattahoochee National Forest and the neighboring Nantahala National Forest. Non-club volunteers are welcome to attend workdays.
Contact: rjsullivan@pol.net
Website: www.mountainhighhikers.org
Maintenance info and trips schedules are found on the website.


The Chattahoochee Trail Horse Association (CTHA) 
The CTHA helps manage and maintain equestrian trails on the Forest, including the Jake and Bull Mountain Trail System on this District. Volunteers are welcome to attend workdays.
2012 Workday Schedule for Jake and Bull Mountain Trails
Contact: georgiacrowes22@bellsouth.net
Website: www.ride-ctha.org


Go Outdoors USA
The Go Outdoors USA is a conservation minded organization that is volunteering time to help the Forest Service maintain the beauty and health of the Forest. See the group's website for more information about the group and clean-up days.
Website: http://gooutdoorsusa.org/

The Blue Ridge District has several trails of varying lengths in Union, Fannin, Lumpkin, and Towns Counties that are not maintained regularly by organized groups. These include hiking trails and one system that is shared by both hikers and mountain bikes. Individuals or groups interested in adopting a trail should contact the District office at 706-745-6928. The District personnel will be happy to match you or your group with an appropriate trail and assist you in learning proper trail maintenance techniques.

Adopt a Campground

Another opportunity to help is to adopt a campground. We have both developed and dispersed campgrounds that can be adopted. Needed activities in our campgrounds include general site cleanup, obliteration of illegal campsites, checking that signs are in good condition and placed properly.  To adopt a campground, contact the District office at 706-745-6928.  

Forest Cleanup

Unfortunately, not all Forest visitors are considerate of the beauty and wellbeing of our natural resources. The dumping of trash is a continual problem on the Forest. There are sites around the District that need to have litter removed.  We are always happy to have help with this never ending task. Trash bags and gloves will be provided.