Smokies park preparing for influx of hikers after release of new movie

GATLINBURG (WATE) – Officials with the Great Smoky Mountains National Park say they are preparing for an influx of new Appalachian Trail hikers due to the new movie “A Walk in the Woods,” but they want to remind inexperienced hikers to take appropriate precautions.

The comedy-adventure movie starring Robert Redford and Nick Nolte is set to be released on September 2. Based on a 1998 book written by Bill Bryson, it tells the story of old friends who decide to hike the 2,190-mile trail.

While the park welcomes hikers, they want to remind people the backcountry is managed as a natural area where the forces of nature determine trail conditions. That could mean swollen streams, bridge washouts, downed trees and erosion. Reservations and permits are required for all overnight stays in the backcountry.

More online: Backcountry hiking

The park also has a set of tips and things hikers need to know posted online.

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