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Appalachian Trail Hikers commonly call Virginia “The Green Tunnel.” Virginia has more of the famous footpath than any other state with 550 miles of trail out of the 2,185 miles and 14 states the Appalachian Trail runs. Most northbound thru-hikers enter Virginia in the early spring, just as fiddle head ferns appear, the trees begin to leaf, and corridors of rhododendron and mountain laurel nestle them.
This exhibit explores Virginia’s Green Tunnel as it meanders through the Roanoke and New River Valleys. While Hiking the Roanoke Appalachian Trail Club’s 113 mile section of trail as well as a portion of trail maintained by the Outdoor Club at Virginia Tech, Gentry explored the color green in its many facets through a series of photographs and drawings.
Matt “Sharpie” Gentry is a Blacksburg citizen, artist, and photographer. Gentry completed a three decades long section hike of the Appalachian Trail in 2014 and continues his evolvement with the trail by volunteering and co-maintaining an 8.5 mile section of the trail in Giles County through the Roanoke Appalachian Trail Club. He earned the trail name Sharpie while keeping a sketch book journal of his hikes and adventures and continues to leave drawings and musings in shelter journals, written in Sharpie.