Instruction (Skills)

Whether you’re on a snow-covered hiking trail or bushwhacking through the woods, at some point on a snowshoe trek, you’re bound to come to a stream without a bridge. Whether the water is frozen or not, even a small stream can pose a slippery challenge. And if there’s ice, will it support the weight of…

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Part 1: The Art of Listening Working in an outdoor environment our role as leaders often incorporates technical or, “hard” skills, and people, or “soft” skills. The technical skills are tangible elements: How to tie a bowline, how to execute a forward stroke, how to set up a tent, and there are a lot of…

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As the holidays quickly approach, many of us are shopping around for presents for the kids in our lives. Books are always my first choice as gifts, but I also like to give unusual games, activities, and experiences. These five picks are at the top of my gift-giving list. L.L. Bean Outdoor School For the…

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Who is the mentor?                                                               Halfway through the two-week outdoor leader training, Keer, the course manager responsible for leading the training, called us together to…

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» CLICK PHOTO ABOVE TO LAUNCH SLIDESHOW Pick a cabin, a bunkhouse, or a campsite: Whichever you prefer, you now can bed down in some of New York’s wildest woods, just a smidge over 40 miles from Midtown Manhattan. Your destination is AMC’s Harriman Outdoor Center (HOC), open July 1 in New York’s Harriman State…

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In the event of a backcountry emergency—such as a debilitating injury, unexpected night out, or severe weather event—a simple lightweight tarp can provide crucial protection from the elements, if you know how to use it. Covering the Basics Tarps come in a variety of dimensions. An 8-by-10 foot tarp can provide full coverage for up…

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Logan Maestri wears a huge grin. Seated on a couch in AMC’s Highland Center, the 30-year-old ex-Marine is recounting the day’s exploits of skiing at nearby Bretton Woods, in New Hampshire’s White Mountain National Forest. “I never skied before, but I kicked ass,” he says. “I had an instructor with me, and he asked, ‘You’ve…

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“Sharp crampons are like sharp knives: They are safer and work best when sharp,” says Steve House, a climber and the author of Training for the New Alpinism. Trekking on ice, snow, and especially rock will eventually dull crampons and make them less effective— particularly early in the season, when ice and snow are light….

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Don’t wait for the first snowfall. Trek down into the basement, out into the garage, or deep into the closet and pull out all of your winter gear—tonight. A thorough preseason evaluation of everything from clothes to skis to crampons will help preserve your gear, keep you safe, and prevent problems once you do head…

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One essential item in any backcountry survival kit? A heavy-duty garbage bag, which you can quickly and easily transform into a potentially life-saving shelter. Here’s how to use a garbage bag for survival: Holding the bag sealed end up, cut a slit no longer than your face along one side seam, starting about 8 inches down…

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