Friends of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail’s mission is to bring together communities and volunteers to build, maintain, and advocate for an enduring footpath connecting North Carolina’s natural, historic, and cultural treasures and to ensure that all people feel welcome on the trail.

Trail Building and Maintenance

Hundreds of volunteers build and maintain trail across the state.

Helping People Enjoy the Trail

We spread the word so all people can find joy and inspiration on the MST and help them find ways to use, care for and extend the trail. We are the primary source of information about how to hike the trail through this website and trail guides.

Improving the Trail Route

We work to improve the hiking experience – identifying and opening campsites, providing interesting routes on quiet backroads to connect sections of completed trail, recruiting “trail angels” who can help thru-hikers on their statewide treks. We work with State Parks, local governments and nonprofit land trusts to help them acquire more land to build new sections of trail.


We help elected officials – local, state and federal – understand the value of the trail for recreation, quality of life, the economy and environment. We explain how our governments can help make it happen.


We encourage individuals and businesses to contribute financially to support the trail.

Join us to build and care for the trail.

Executive Director

Brent Laurenz

Associate Director

Betsy Brown

Trail Resource Manager

Jim Grode

Operations Manager

Elizabeth Hipps

Membership and Engagement Coordinator

Sherri Seagroves

Coastal Crescent Project Manager

Ben Jones


Heather Cotton, Black Mountain

Vice President

Larry Humbert, Belmont


Marcia Bromberg, Asheville


Karl Anderson, Greensboro

Jerry Barker, Raleigh
Lynne Bresler, Chapel Hill
Shrease Johnson Brown, Mebane
Carl deAndrade, White Lake
Bob Dillard, Southport
Randy Johnson, Banner Elk
Tammy Kelly, Louisburg
Angela Lee, Chapel Hill
Les Love, Weaverville
Sharon McCarthy, Charlotte
Mike Parker, Cherokee
Dwayne Patterson, Garner
Beverly Scarlett, Hillsborough

Allen de Hart

Allen de Hart, Founder of Friends of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail, 1926-2016 | Photo courtesy of Les Love