AMC Outdoors

Slam the door in Old Man Winter’s face. Kick Jack Frost out cold. Laugh as the wintry wind howls. Their chilly fingers can’t get you inside your snug backcountry cabin. Warmed by a crackling wood stove, flush with enjoyment from a day’s exhilarating hike, ski, or snowshoe, you kick back and bliss out in the…

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It’s like a force field around your new rain jacket, an invisible defense system that repels water so vigorously it almost sizzles on contact. Unable to penetrate your armor, the droplets bead up, roll off, and leave you deliciously dry underneath. But time, use, and abuse wear down your jacket’s protection, until one day you…

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In the new AMC Guide to Winter Hiking and Camping, authors Yemaya Maurer and Lucas St. Clair recommend you start winter hiking on trails that are close to home or familiar to you. They also advocate keeping the mileage and elevation modest. Short day hikes (no more than 3 miles) will help you adapt to…

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On January 26, 1906, 10 AMC members departed the Mount Madison House, an inn in Gorham, N.H., to climb Mount Madison. The first recorded winter summit of the peak had been achieved only 17 years earlier by Rosewell Lawrence and Laban Watson. Two from the 1906 party ascended via the Durand Ridge while the remaining…

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AMC members were backcountry skiing pioneers in the early 20th century. By 1928, the organization had a committee and weekly trips devoted to the increasingly popular sport. In the North Country, Pinkham Notch Camp had developed into a popular destination for skiers headed to Tuckerman Ravine, while to the south AMC purchased Cardigan Lodge on…

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In 1964, the U.S. Congress permanently protected some of the last wild places in America, as well as lands once tamed by human industry. The Wilderness Act established a National Wilderness Preservation System that now includes 704 areas in the U.S. The lands, unmarred by roads and left largely to nature’s whims, are places to…

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At AMC’s second meeting, in 1876, founders decided to extend membership to women and allow them equal participation in club outings and events. Despite being encumbered by modest dress, which included long, thick Victorian skirts, a large number of women quickly became active members in the club. In 1882, women made up the majority of…

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In 1908, Warren W. Hart, an indefatigable tramper, hiked down into the Great Gulf from Mount Jefferson. Hemmed in by the Northeast’s highest peaks, including Mounts Jefferson, Adams, Madison, and Washington, the Great Gulf had seldom been traversed and never logged prior to Hart’s journey. The remote wilderness and its rugged backdrop ignited Hart’s imagination…

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As the days become shorter and the nights cool, trees blush as summer green drains from their leaves. Autumn triggers apple picking, county fairs, and weekends spent tramping through dappled woods in search of foliage-studded vistas. Fire lookouts, once used for spotting smoke and flames, are now vantage points for spying the vibrant oranges, reds,…

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The surge often happens when the trail levels off and trees no longer seem to march uphill. Or when the dirt path scuffs onto open slabs of granite. You know you’re close so your pace quickens until you are standing on a summit, admiring vistas of nearby peaks, erratic cliffs, or rivers tumbling out of…

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