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GSMNP, Icewater Springs Shelter and Boulevard Trail

I just called GSMNP Headquarters and Icewater is now OPEN to backcountry users
with proper reservations (423 436-1231; Backcountry Reservations) and an
appropriately completed permit.  It is no longer limited to thru-hikers.

The other GOOD NEWS for hikers and backpackers wanting to get to Mt. LeConte is
that the Boulevard Trail is supposed to open tomorrow, August 30, 1996.  The
person at Park Headquarters, with whom I spoke, was quick to emphasize the 
SUPPOSED portion of that statement.  Indicating that the status of plans to
open it tomorrow could change by tomorrow.  Ask when you make your

If you call the main number at Headquarters (423 436-1200) for trail 
conditions, do not bother going through the at least four levels of 'MENU'.  
Just hang on for an Operator who will be able to give that information to you.

I anticipate that we will all have a safe and enjoyable holiday weekend.  Enjoy
the recreation of your choice.  Please do so responsibly and with due 
consideration for others.

John Newman