Group Behavior

Early fall is a beautiful time of year for paddling. The water is warm, the days sunny, and leaf peeping, from your kayak, canoe or SUP (stand up paddle board), is a ton of fun.  Before your next trip, take a few minutes to think about what your group needs when getting on, and off,…

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Using resources from the Outdoor Leader Handbook, you and your co-Leader planned an activity and posted it on outdoors.org. The trip is full and you know it’s going to be great! The day of the trip arrives. You & your co-Leader meet the group at the designated spot. Before getting underway, you provide introductions, share the…

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Whether you’re taking a walk in your local park or you’re hiking in the mountains, nature can offer solace when things feel overwhelming. For those on the autism spectrum—almost 2 percent of American children, who struggle to communicate and are extra-sensitive to bright lights, loud noises, and new places and people—a nature path provides especially…

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The situation: You, and a co-leader, have a group of ten (10) participants. You’ve planned an ambitious day hike up a 4000+ peak in late July. The weather is clear, although it is hot & humid with temperatures in the mid-80s (Fahrenheit). Every member of your group has at least 2 liters of water and…

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Backyard games, climbing, hiking, paddling, picnics, sidewalk strolls, trail running . . . If we make a list of the ways we enjoy the outdoors during the long days of summer, it’d be nearly endless! This is a very busy time of year for AMC’s volunteer leaders. Leaders plan & conduct a variety of activities…

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In analyzing the scenario from May’s post, you may have considered the following points: The individual wishing to depart is a proficient and experienced hiker; Though they are unfamiliar with the trails in this area, they do know how to read a map and navigate; The route they hiked yesterday is the same one they’d…

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Below is a fictional case study created from the experiences of AMC’s volunteer leaders on their trips. Read on & consider what you would do if you found yourself in this situation. . . Case Study: Trip Participant Wants to Depart Early Trip Location: Lonesome Lake Hut & Cannon Mountain, Franconia Notch, New Hampshire Trails:…

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Our revised Leadership Requirements & Guidelines, which go into effect on March 15, recommend including a Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) component in leadership training for the amazing folks who volunteer their time & energy on behalf of the AMC. The following post, authored by the Ava Holliday and Aparna Rajagopal-Durbin of the Avarna Group, offers…

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If you work in the outdoor industry, as a volunteer, seasonal employee, or full-time professional, you may be familiar with the term “incident report.” (If you are not familiar with an incident report form, you can find an example of one here.) Incident reports are meant to capture a detailed, succinct and objective narrative of an…

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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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