My daughter first visited an AMC hut when she was in the womb, prompting slightly nervous questions from the croo about my due date. Now that she can hike in on her own two feet, we’ve revisited that hut—the family-friendly Lonesome Lake—and we’re eager to explore new options.
AMC offers many opportunities to arrange your own outdoor summer traditions, like hiking to the huts. But it also makes the planning easier with programs for families and teens and volunteer-managed family-friendly camps. Here’s a quick summary of what’s available.
Notice that for Teen Wilderness Adventures, a special discount is being offered through the end of January, and for Three Mile Island, applications are due by February 1.
AMC Family Adventure Camps
AMC offers two types of family adventure camps, focused on children of different ages. The five-day outdoor adventure programs, designed for families with children ages 5 to 12, are based at AMC lodges in New Hampshire and Maine, and offer guided daily activities like hiking, paddling, and nature study, with meals, lodging, and evening programs included. This year, AMC’s Cardigan Lodge will host a new two-night series for families with kids ages 2 to 5. It too will include nature exploration, meals, and lodging.
Teen Wilderness Adventures
For older kids (12 to 18), consider these 4- to 20-night backcountry hiking, paddling, whitewater rafting, mountain biking, and rock climbing adventures. Choices include trips organized by age, activity, and location. If you book by January 31, you can save 20 percent (in addition to your member discount if you’re an AMC member).
Teen Trail Crews
AMC offers teenagers the chance to learn new skills while working on trails for one to four weeks in the Berkshires of Massachusetts, White Mountains of New Hampshire, and the north woods of Maine. Many crews camp in the backcountry near the trails.
Three Mile Island
This volunteer-managed shorefront camp on Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire has a main lodge building and 47 kerosene-lantern-lit cabins. It offers meals, weekly conservation speakers, and a wonderful spot to swim, canoe, kayak, sail, and hike with your family. The season is from June 23 to August 25, and all applications postmarked by February 1 receive equal consideration. Kids must be at least 4 years old.
Echo Lake Camp
This volunteer-managed waterfront camp near Acadia National Park in Maine has a main lodge building and platform tents. It offers day and evening programs, meals, and a great location to swim, canoe, kayak, sail, and hike with your family. The season is from June 30 to September 1, and all applications postmarked between March 1 and April 1 receive equal consideration. Kids must be at least 4 years old.
Cold River Camp
This volunteer-managed camp in the beautiful, undeveloped Evans Notch area of the White Mountain National Forest has a central lodge and single, double, and family cabins (most with fireplaces or wood stoves and kerosene lamps). From here, you and your family can go hiking, canoeing, kayaking, biking, and swimming; meals and programs are included, and a nature trail leads to a tea house perfect for reading and painting (if your kids will slow down for such activities). The season is from June 30 to September 1, and applications are considered by lottery on April 1 and thereafter. There is no minimum age for kids.
Great Kids, Great Outdoors is an AMC Outdoors blog, written by Kristen Laine and Heather Stephenson. Heather wrote this post.