AMC’s Trail Crew Through the Ages

March 15, 2016
trail crew
AMC Library & ArchivesAMC’s 1977 trail crew displays the tools of its trade.

In AMC’s early years of trail work, members concentrated on building new trails in the White Mountains. The organization oversaw the construction of iconic routes through King Ravine, the Great Gulf, and Tuckerman Ravine, along with many other trails that remain in use today. But as trail mileage grew, so did the need for regular maintenance.

At first, AMC hired local woodsmen to occasionally clear trails. Then, in 1911, the organization took the first step toward a professional trail staff by hiring a college student to maintain trails for one
month. Eight years later, AMC employed its inaugural full-time summer trail crew to clear blowdowns and widen the trails that, by then, formed an extensive network throughout the White Mountains.

From that foundation grew a long tradition of trail stewardship—not just in New Hampshire but throughout the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic. Professional trail crews and volunteer adopters, crews, and stewards now build, maintain, and manage thousands of miles of trail each year, protecting and extending the legacy of AMC’s trail-building pioneers.



Watch an action-packed video on AMC’s professional trail crew and learn how you can volunteer for trail work.


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Marc Chalufour

Marc Chalufour, a former senior editor of AMC Outdoors, contributes to the trail-running blog Running Wild.