May/June 2011

Each summer a collection of young men and women converges on the White Mountains to staff AMC’s huts. From Carter Notch to Lonesome Lake, these croos provide hikers with everything from trail directions and first aid to fresh-baked bread. Meet the 2011 hut croo in the following video. LEARN MORE Request your own reservation for…

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My first climbing shoes squished my feet and crunched my toes in throbbing misery. I quickly learned that crushing toe pain isn’t exactly compatible with fun or motivation—and climbed a lot less as a result. My mistake? I went shopping with the misguided belief that climbing shoes should fit as tightly as possible for maximum…

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If you’re a Costco member—or know somebody who is—pick up a 30-ounce bag of their Wholesome Fruit & Nuts on your next shopping visit. In my opinion, it’s one of the tastiest, healthiest, highest-calorie, and best value trail snacks available. It’s even sodium-free to boot. (If Costco isn’t an option, you can still find it…

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When it comes to packing food for the backcountry, protecting essential gear from moisture, or entombing a biohazard pair of smelly socks, there’s one item that does it all: Ziploc Freezer Bags. Ziploc is the brand name product line from SC Johnson. Zip-lock bags are from any of its myriad competitors. In my experience, they…

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“Let kids play with fire, and other rules for good parenting,” read the title on a rave book review of 50 Dangerous Things (You Should Let Your Children Do) by Gever Tulley and Julie Speigler, published this month by Penguin under the New American Library imprint. “I’m a parent who lets my children play with…

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Nature’s engineers are back on our pond. Unlike the two-legged kind, they don’t set up orange cones around their work sites — but we’ve learned to recognize the signs of their activity all the same. One is the growing pile of saplings, freshly trimmed of their bark, on top of the beaver lodge at the…

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Part 12 in an ongoing series highlighting Northeast-based gear companies. Have you ever tried to find a pair of shoes that was made in America? It’s not easy. These days the overwhelming majority of footwear is manufactured overseas, especially China. When it comes to running shoes, in fact, only one company still manufactures footwear in…

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When Ursula was seven years old, she decided that she wanted to be Jane Goodall. Her second-grade class had learned about Goodall’s groundbreaking work as a naturalist in Africa, and Ursula’s imagination was fired by the idea of living among chimpanzees in the dense forests of Tanzania. In fact, she liked the thought of that…

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A whistle is an essential piece of survival equipment. This lightweight and inexpensive piece of gear can provide the margin between life and death in the event of a backcountry mishap—especially if you’re alone or separated from your group. And the louder the whistle, the better the odds that rescuers will find you. Unlike the…

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If you fly Southwest Airlines this month, take a look at the in-flight magazine in your seat-back. The photo on the cover is of our pond, and the story inside is about a two-week theater camp that we’ve run out of our house the past three summers. I didn’t write the article — Jim did…

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