Mountaineering

When you’re out in the winter cold, one of the fastest ways to lose body heat is to come into contact with a cold surface. Physics being physics, heat will begin flowing from the warmer object (you) to the colder object, a process known as conduction. And more often than not, your rear end is the chilly recipient of…

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Part 1: You are the leader on a 4-day winter backpacking trip in the White Mountains. Your group consists of seven participants of varied skill level. All have some experience winter camping. Your co-leader has Wilderness First Aid (WFA) and winter backpacking experience. This is day 3 of the trip. Today’s plan is to summit a…

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                      Winter recreation can intimidate, and for good reason: It’s cold and icy out there! But facing those elements also makes the experience all the more rewarding, whether you’re cutting turns through fresh powder or sleeping under the stars. Make the most of the snowy…

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When you gotta go in the woods, it’s crucial that you follow proper Leave No Trace (LNT) practices to minimize your impact. I’ve included a refresher video at the end to review this essential skill, but here wanted to highlight one of its most critical aspects: digging a proper hole. Per LNT guidelines, it should be 6 to…

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Cross-country skiers don’t need much to enjoy a winter day beyond some fresh snow and a few miles of trail. Throw in a shelter, a wood stove, a hot drink, and a warm bed and you have the makings of a perfect weekend. With a growing number of public and private landowners building yurts, such…

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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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Peak-bagging, thru-hiking, red-lining: There’s no shortage of challenges for hikers who like to check off their accomplishments. And as the lists multiply, so does the number of hikers reporting their achievements. With three years still to go in this decade, the 2010s have already been record-setting. (Data gathered from ADK 46ers, Appalachian Trail Conservancy, AMC Four Thousand Footer Club)

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Update: White Mountain Guide, 30th Edition, is now available in AMC’s online store. AMC published its first New Hampshire guidebook, Guide to the Paths and Camps in the White Mountains, in 1907. You might know it by its current name: White Mountain Guide. The slim inaugural edition cataloged and categorized the growing number of trails…

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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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