ULTRALIGHT BACKPACKING GEAR might seem like a modern phenomenon, featuring the latest and lights high-tech materials, but the idea dates back to the very beginning of organized hiking in New England. More than two dozen outdoors organizations attended the first meeting of the New England Trail Conference (NETC) in 1916. These college outing clubs, hiking…

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Water trails, like their land-based counterparts, lead us through diverse landscapes, challenge us with varying levels of difficulty, and provide a new vantage from which to see the world. For paddlers of all types, kayak or canoe, whitewater or flatwater, the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic offer a wealth of routes connecting navigable, publicly accessible bodies of…

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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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Some hikes are rewarding in almost any condition, whether the ground is frozen solid or covered by deep snowpack. When we asked AMC Books authors for their favorite early-winter hikes, they volunteered a coastal walk, a summit climb, a lake loop, and everything in between. Frozen and frosty or snowy and slick, these recommended hikes…

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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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» CLICK IMAGE ABOVE TO LAUNCH SLIDESHOW   When AMC’s Mountain Leadership Committee (MLC) was established in 1958, it came with a clear agenda: a multifaceted campaign “in response to the growing need for action in the field of mountain safety,” as announced in Appalachia. Although the backpacking boom wouldn’t fully hit for another decade,…

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Meet AMC’s 2016 hut croo! Get to know the staff in this video then go introduce yourself when you visit AMC’s White Mountain huts. Watch all AMC videos on YouTube.   LEARN MORE Request your own reservation for AMC’s White Mountain Huts Read about AMC camps and reserve a bunk or cabin Meet past hut…

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» CLICK PHOTO ABOVE TO LAUNCH SLIDESHOW   When a Boston medical-supply company introduced The Appalachian Emergency Outfit at $2.50 apiece, circa 1920, initial sales were slow. Manufactured by Boylston Street’s E.F. Mahady Co. specifically for AMC, the backcountry first-aid kit failed to entice club members because, as a 1921 AMC report claimed, “so confident…

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A furry head skims the surface of the pond a few feet from the trail. Then it’s gone, just a ripple and a question remaining: Was it a beaver? A river otter? I’m eager to get another look. I’m only 100 yards into my weekend run, following the Dike Trail through Great Meadows National Wildlife…

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