Md. Appalachian Trail shelters closed after hiker’s death

HAGERSTOWN, Md. (AP) – The Maryland Department of Natural Resources says it’s temporarily closing eight overnight shelters and campgrounds on Maryland’s section of the Appalachian Trail after a hiker was killed by a fallen tree.

The agency said Wednesday that the only overnight area open is the Dahlgren Campground about a mile south of Boonsboro.

Maryland Park Service Superintendent Nita Settina says the shelters will reopen as tree maintenance work is completed.

Settina says the state is taking immediate precautionary action to address any potential hazards as the spring hiking season begins.

Jason Parish, 36, of Philadelphia, died Sunday when a tree felled by strong winds crashed on top of him near the Ed Garvey Shelter near the southern end of Maryland’s 40-mile trail segment.

The nearly 2,200-mile footpath stretches from Georgia to Maine.

(Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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