Maine Woods

When researching new trails, you often find results for hikes that, while beautiful, are sure to draw a crowd. You may find yourself sharing trails with too many hikers or fighting for parking spaces at trailheads—annoyances in the best of times, let alone an era of physical distancing. Thankfully, alternatives to these popular trails exist…

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1. EARTH DAY ONLINE AMC marked the 50th anniversary of Earth Day virtually with an array of online opportunities to celebrate our planet. Throughout April, AMC staff and volunteers hosted weekly lunchtime learning webinars on a variety of conservation topics, and members were encouraged to share their stories from the first Earth Day in 1970, as…

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The woods of central Maine remain a popular destination for active adventurers. Here, with Baxter State Park and Katahdin, the northern terminus of the Appalachian Trail, looming over the surrounding communities, you’d expect that outdoor knowledge is part of everyone’s upbringing. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case, especially in Piscataquis County where access to the…

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The past few years, as AMC’s White Mountain Professional Trail Crew ventured out to chain saw blown-down trees, clean up eroded footpaths, and repair steps and ladders, the 101-year-old team—which maintains 360 miles of trails in New Hampshire and western Maine—featured as many women as men. This certainly wasn’t always the case. AMC’s trail crew…

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The Appalachian Mountain Club today released a new report titled The Impact of Wind Power Development on High Value Scenic Resources in Maine. This study, conducted by AMC Senior Staff Scientist David Publicover and Assistant Staff Scientist Catherine Poppenwimer, examined the extent to which certain scenic resources (mountain summits and great ponds) have been and…

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Imagine a perfect cross-country ski trail. The snow underfoot is firm but not icy, forming a wide, clear, white path. It takes you over frozen creeks and under tall pines. There are no branches in your way, no potholes to hinder your progress. You can glide, swiftly and surely, through the winter woods. These trail…

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1. SUMMIT HIGH POINTS The 143rd Annual Summit, AMC’s meeting open to all members, welcomed a record 535 attendees on January 26. Some 40 workshops and hands-on tutorials included yoga, backcountry cooking, and learning about AMC’s recent conservation work. Summit also provides a chance to recognize volunteers who demonstrate outstanding passion and commitment to the…

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Fat bikes draw attention. Tricked out with bulbous tires measuring 3, 4, even 5 inches wide, they’re more dune buggy than mountain bike. And while those tires allow cyclists to roll over just about any terrain, they also elicit comments from bystanders. Which means I’m more than a little self-conscious as I adjust the seat…

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Approachable and accessible, cross-country skiing is a great activity for outdoor enthusiasts of all levels. Still, if you’ve never strapped on a pair of cross-country (also called “Nordic”) skis, figuring out where to start can be daunting. For first-timers who may need some extra guidance, begin here, with our list of destinations that cater to…

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1. No-Pay Stays In its third year, the Peter Roderick Trail Award Scholarship was given to six AMC members, all first-time trail-work volunteers on AMC’s Maine Woods property. Established in 2016 by the Maine Chapter in honor of a longtime executive committee member, the scholarships cover the cost of food and lodging on volunteer trail-work…

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