Camping

Whether afoot, on skis, or astride a bike, there are lots of ways to get around AMC’s nearly 75,000 acres of Maine Woods Initiative (MWI) property in the 100-Mile Wilderness region—and lots of trails to get around on. At last count, AMC’s growing network of recreational trails covered 130 miles, including 90 miles of groomed…

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I have, and continue to use, an original Jetboil PCS stove from the early 2000’s. It has proven to be durable, reliable, and useful in two very specialized ways: it boils water exceptionally fast and it’s great for making coffee. (Other than that, it’s pretty much useless—as far as I’m concerned, the pot is just too…

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One night last spring, curled in my tent on an island off the Maine coast and lit only by the glow of my iPhone screen, I posted a photograph on Instagram. This was my fifth post on the photosharing site but my first from such a remote location. As I hit “share,” I felt a…

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A brand-new shelter along the Appalachian Trail (AT) has an unusual trait in common with its predecessor. For both, AMC helicoptered in prefabricated components that were then assembled on site, at AMC’s Speck Pond Campsite in Maine’s Mahoosuc Range. Last fall, AMC staff dismantled the old Speck Pond AT shelter, which had stood for 49…

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Lightweight, compressible, and long-lasting, a down-filled sleeping bag is a delightful addition to any camper’s or backpacker’s gear locker. The problem is that down-filled bags are almost always more expensive (sometimes way more expensive) than synthetic-fill options, a trend that has only gotten worse in recent years. Indeed, these days you can easily spend north of $400…

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There’s a general truism when it comes to ultralight tents. As manufacturers shave down the ounces, they often shave inches off the tent’s length. Which is fine if you’re less than 6 feet tall. But if you’re tall like me (6 feet 5 inches), there’s nothing fine about having your head and/or feet pushing directly against…

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It can happen to even the most seasoned hiker. You casually duck into the woods to relieve yourself, zip up your pants, and—uh, oh. Which way was the trail? If you’re a solo hiker who becomes disoriented—or, worse, injured—nobody is there to help. Don’t panic! You’ve got options. Before You Go Getting found starts before…

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I’ve always been fascinated by maps. I can’t go more than a day or two without picking one up and losing myself in the intricate details of a three-dimensional world flattened and scaled to fit on a page. As I was thinning out my stash one day—grudgingly admitting that 50 topographic renderings of Mount Washington…

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The morning was cold and gray, and the air felt heavy, like electricity pulsed through it—like waiting, wondering, restless movement. It smelled like water and leaves or maybe early snow. As the sun painted blazes through the fog, I began to make out motionless black forms on the filmy expanse of water, between the oranges…

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It takes about 6 hours to travel from Washington, D.C., to Boston on an Amtrak Acela Express train. In August 2016, I traveled the same distance, but in lieu of fast-tracking my travel plans, I broke up my time on the rails into a 6-night, 7-day odyssey. I spent every night except the last tent…

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