Grant helps elk volunteers on bikes

A $1,000 grant given to the Elk Bugle Corps in Cataloochee Valley of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park will be used to buy gear for the new bike patrol.

The grant from the Haywood County Tourism Development Authority to Friends of the Smokies went to help fund the Elk Bike Patrol and get volunteer riders some key pieces of equipment.

The money provides uniform shirts, bike shorts and pants, safety mirrors, repair kits, and radio gear. The bicycle volunteers, like Stefanie McIntosh of Asheville, help control traffic while dealing with elk-caused jams and answering visitor questions.

“Being on a bike allows us to respond quickly during high traffic times and during visitor emergencies,” McIntosh commented.

The TDA grant also supplies additional uniforms for the Elk Bugle Corps who rove valley on foot and in the volunteer vehicles, so that visitors know where to turn for information. 

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