As Conserving Carolina’s Trails Specialist, Peter is passionate about developing a sustainable public recreation trail network on conserved lands in the dramatic Hickory Nut Gorge. Since 2010, he has led the development of nearly 20 miles of new sustainable trails as well as the legislative authorization of the planned 130-mile Hickory Nut Gorge State Trail network. He is a two-two time nationally award-winning trail designer, having received the Coalition of Recreational Trails Achievement Award for outstanding Construction and Design in 2018 for the three-mile Wildcat Rock Trail and in 2019 for the 8-mile Weed Patch Mountain Trail and Tunnel Trail. His design and project management of the Weed Patch Mountain Trail were also recognized by the Society of Recreational Planners at the National Outdoor Recreation Conference in 2018 and American Trails International Trail Symposium in 2019.
Peter also enjoys sharing his enthusiasm for Conserving Carolina’s land conservation projects through writing and public speaking. He has authored more than 60 “Stories of the Land” columns for the Hendersonville Times-News chronicling the human connection to protected lands. In 2017, he was named the Rising Leader of the Year by the North Carolina Land Trust Council.
A native of Charlotte, Peter is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is the author of Exploring North Carolina’s Lookout Towers (Blair; 2021) and co-author of Hiking Great Smoky Mountains National Park (Falcon Press; 2021). Peter also works to restore and preserve historic fire lookout towers in western NC, having founded the North Carolina chapter of the Forest Fire Lookout Association.
An accomplished hiker and peakbagger, he has traversed all 900 miles of trails in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, reached the highest point in 40 U.S. states and all 100 North Carolina counties, and climbed the Adirondack 46ers, New England Highest Hundred, all summits (790) above 4,000 feet in elevation the eastern United States, and more than 2,000 ranked peaks nationwide. Prior to getting his start in land conservation as an AmeriCorps Project Conserve member, he completed a thru-hike of the 2,181-mile Appalachian Trail in 2010. Peter and his wife Allison live in Asheville with their two cats, Sweetie and Oscar (the Grouch).
Back to Staff Back to Staff