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I. One of my oldest memories survives from an unknown year in the early 1980s, when I was 6 or 7, and takes place near the top of a long-since-forgotten mountain in Acadia National Park. I had been following my parents as usual when we stepped out from the canopied shelter of the trail onto…

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» CLICK IMAGE ABOVE TO LAUNCH SLIDESHOW What is AMC? Ask any two members and you might get two totally different answers. For some, AMC means trails and huts and the White Mountains, but the organization’s mission spreads well beyond those iconic elements. Each year AMC’s photo contest gives us a 365-day view of the…

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We broke trail into the fading light of dusk. Just as we thought to grab our headlamps, our destination’s soft outline materialized in the falling snow. We had made it. The cabin door was partially sealed by rime ice and snow—nothing a good shove couldn’t handle—and after passing through it and dropping our packs, we…

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This year we asked AMC front- and backcountry experts across the Northeast to share what’s on their personal holiday wish lists. Perhaps not surprisingly, responses ranged from heavy reading to a ski-trail groomer and everything in between. Maybe you’ll find gift ideas below for the outdoor fans in your family—or for your own list. What…

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What’s one thing an outdoor enthusiast likes even better than conservation land? New conservation land, when—by donation or purchase—more turf gets protected for the health of the environment and the enjoyment of future generations. A number of key habitats, from remote forests in Maine to an island in the Chesapeake Bay, were preserved by governments…

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Editor’s note: What if the outdoors AMC exists to promote and protect were to alter dramatically—or even to disappear? We asked a graphic artist and former AMC caretaker with a master’s degree in cartooning to paint the striking picture.   LEARN MORE Learn more about AMC’s research on climate and energy.  

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Getting to Katahdin is as much of an adventure as being there. Just ask the countless Appalachian Trail thru-hikers who have ended their 2,185-mile journey on the 5,268-foot summit that doubles as the AT’s northern terminus and Maine’s highest peak. For our little crew of four skiers, reaching Katahdin meant delaying our trip twice due…

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Editor’s note: What follows is an exclusive excerpt from Chasing Summits: In Pursuit of High Places and an Unconventional Life, available now from AMC Books. By sheer coincidence, January 1, 2000—the first day of the new millennium—was the day my life changed forever. My second wife, Debbie, sat on the couch looking at photo albums…

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On a rugged Allegheny mountainside in south-central Pennsylvania winds a ribbon of pavement that’s stuck in time. Shielded as much by a canopy of trees as an eerie mystique, the road is slowly yielding to nature’s reclamation. Grassy medians long ago spilled their banks, and oaks and maples have gained a firm foothold, interrupting the…

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Take a step outdoors. What do you see? Hear? Feel? What do you seek by taking that next step? These simple questions can have complex answers. Nature means many things to many people—and many things for the same person. It can satisfy our curiosity and spirituality, challenge us intellectually and physically. As a writer, photographer,…

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