this issue, there was not any controversy in this sleepy little
town. Most of the 78 residents of Peak were at peace with each other
rarely locking their doors. In a recent visit to the town several
residents could be seen sitting on their front porches reminiscing
about days gone by. Some are veterans of foreign wars, others are
veterans of a life of toil in the cotton mills. The attire that
the folks were wearing could be considered "Carolina Casual".
Ball caps and flowery dresses. Some expressed worry about the influx
of "Big city strangers" and the crime that may follow.
The trail is not expected to bring great economic benefit to the
average resident. Hikers don't usually spend a lot of money in adjacent
towns, because most of the food and supplies that they use are brought
from home. Young folks with brightly colored and sometimes outlandish
clothing, walking in the backyards of the elderly, may be a frightening
site also. Hikers that don't wave as they pass by might promote
even more suspicion.
is a very complex issue at best. The compromise offered by the citizens
of Peak is not ideal for the hikers. The compromise involves moving
the trail to a different location, crossing the Broad River on a
busy highway. The Palmetto Conservation Foundation has proposed
a small shift in the trail and compensation for the retired couples
and widows that live along the trail. No significant change in the
original location of the trail. After spending 25,000 dollars on
the 11 miles of railroad right of way, the foundation can ill afford
to purchase more land in the area. A drawn out legal process
would add far too much to the cost of an otherwise inexpensive trail..
The residents of Peak, most live on a fixed income, can not
afford anything more than the cost of survival. It is our hope that
both sides can come to an equitable solution in the near future.
It is our sincere hope that we as hikers do not scare or otherwise
adversely affect people that could be our own Grandparents. Perhaps
in the interest of peace with our neighbors the much younger hikers
can bend a little more and move the trail to another location. After
all the citizens of Peak were there first !
to contact Politicians involved in this issue
Regional Council of Governments