David Dick’s 1933 map of the A.T. from Roanoke to New River
When the RATC was founded in November 1932, one of the first tasks was to finalize an A.T. route around Roanoke. The initial pathway marked in 1931 was not satisfactory to the hikers of RATC, and they convinced ATC leader Myron Avery to drop down from the Blue Ridge at Black Horse (Tavern) Gap, cross U.S. 11 near Daleville, and climb Tinker Mountain for a tough hike and outstanding views. Avery agreed and took the train from Washington, DC several times in 1933 to oversee completion of the new Trail. Avery’s PATC’S 1934 Guide to the Paths in the Blue Ridge touted the new route, sayin that: “Except for the Pinnacles of the Dan, Tinker Mountain is the outstanding feature of the Trail from the Natural Bridge National Forest to New River.”
David Dick, one of RATC’s founders and a certified surveyor, was the RATC’s first Trail Supervisor, and he also drew the first map of the A.T. from the Roanoke Valley to New River in 1933 at Avery’s request. As Dick reported at the end of the year, the map was printed by the PATC and sold as a fund raiser by both the PACT and the RATC.
Here is how Dick reported the work completed in 1933:
[Transcribed by Diana Christopulos, March 20, 2020]
RATC volunteers helped Avery and volunteers from other areas complete the Trail all the way to New River, near Galax, and Dick drew the first official map of the route. It is shown below, along with an excerpt from the upper left portion crediting Dick with creation of the map. The full map and the portion showing Dick’s name are below.
For comparison, the map below shows the 1931 (yellow), 1933 (red) and present (blue) route of the A.T. in southwestern Virginia.