Leave No Trace

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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You know the feeling: Yesterday was rainy, but today the sun is out, the sky is clear, the temperature is creeping toward warm. It’s spring, and you’re ready to hit the bike trails. But hold up there, friend. Before you unleash your wheels on vulnerable backcountry mountain bike routes, think about whether there are other…

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How essential is it to put your food in bear boxes even if there aren’t any bears in the area? While bears can be a major concern, they’re not the only wild animals that pose a risk. We see it all too often. Campers arrive after a long slog overs hills and rivers to finally reach home. In an effort…

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Have you ever met a Ridgerunner while hiking on the Appalachian Trail? For the AT’s entire 60 miles in Connecticut and its first 17 in Massachusetts, these AMC staffers serve as the trail’s eyes and ears: talking to the public about Leave No Trace principles, taking care of blown-down trees, gathering statistics on trail use,…

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As a teenager, I struggled with alcohol addiction. I was able to find my healing by going back to what my Nipmuc ancestors called the Original Instructions. These are the teachings that instill our sacred place in the world: the renewal and remembering of our intimate relationship to all the life forces in the universe….

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Biking on trails and other unpaved surfaces can cause significant damage, especially if the terrain is muddy or easily disturbed. While fat bikes can cause less impact than mountain bikes due to wider tires and broader weight distribution, that doesn’t give you an all-season pass to ride when conditions are poor. Always check local regulations…

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Thanks to the efforts of conservation groups and the effectiveness of federal, state, and local clean-water policies, many of New England’s most iconic rivers—including the Connecticut, Housatonic, and Merrimack—are cleaner today than they were in decades past, says Kristen Sykes, AMC’s director of conservation strategies. Despite the improvements, there is no guarantee better conditions will…

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Extensive use of trekking poles on popular trails can tear up soft soil, damage trailside vegetation, and scar rocks. The good news is, you can reduce those damaging effects by following a few best practices. Be mindful of the potential environmental and visual impacts where you plant your poles. Don’t use trekking poles when you…

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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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First published in 1907, AMC’s revered and respected White Mountain Guide marks a milestone with the publication of its 30th edition, which rolled off the press and onto bookshelves in August. Together with its revamped pull-out maps, the guide is an essential trip-planning tool, designed not only to help hikers find and appreciate plunging waterfalls,…

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