March/April 2017

American Rivers, a waterway protection organization, publishes an annual ranking of America’s most endangered waterways. Threats include poor environmental protection, damming, deforestation, and pollution, yet the rivers on this list still feature spectacular potential for canoeing and kayaking. These four endangered rivers, from the last three years’ lists, are each worth exploring: 1. MERRIMACK RIVER…

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Sure, you know about AMC’s famed high-mountain hut system. Perhaps you’ve stayed in a few (or all!) of them. Or, maybe you’ve rolled up to an AMC roadside lodge and used it as a convenient base camp for exploring nearby trails and peaks. Most guests consider AMC’s huts and lodges a great value, given their…

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The past two weeks have featured some bitter face-burning winds, Arctic temperatures, and a full dose of extreme winter weather. And when I think of extreme winter weather, the observatory atop 6,288-foot Mount Washington in New Hampshire usually jumps to mind. Few places on Earth can rival it for atmospheric intensity and the fury of raw…

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Spring officially starts on March 20, but New Englanders know the season really begins when the maple syrup starts flowing. And we know when that is because the region explodes with events, tastings, and tours, which are almost universally family-friendly. Here are some of the best resources to find a sugarhouse or a maple sugaring event near you,…

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There are myriad ways to celebrate the iconic list that is the 4,000-footers of New Hampshire. Now a whole new batch of T-shirts, posters, and other items are available to help capture the obsession, fascination, and dedication these mountains inspire. These 48 peaks, each of which rises to a height above 4,000 feet, have been represented in many a product…

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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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SIGNS OF SPRING in New Hampshire’s White Mountain National Forest (WMNF) come in many shapes and forms, from skiers trudging up Tuckerman Ravine in search of soft snow to migratory birds returning to the native-plants garden at Pinkham Notch Visitor Center. But 4 miles north of Pinkham, at AMC’s Camp Dodge Volunteer Center, there’s a…

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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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Amid the ever-expanding library of apps available for your smartphone are several designed to nudge you into greener habits. These include eco-conscious social media platforms, games designed to reduce your carbon footprint, and hyper-local information sources. Here are four free eco-apps (some with premium add-ons) worth checking out this spring: Changers CO2 Fit hosts group competitions. The…

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In July 2014, working as part of a team surveying plants above the Alpine Garden on New Hampshire’s Mount Washington, I came across many interesting native flora: arctic lichens, elfin tundra clubmoss, even a rare white-flowered rhododendron. The most remarkable find, though, was a distinctly unpleasant surprise: a patch of non-native dandelions blooming high on the…

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