North Country

If you judge a hike by its name, you’re bound to be scared away from some unforgettable places. Why not embrace our region’s inner demons and explore the dozens of devil-themed trails, parks, and natural features scattered across New England and the Mid-Atlantic? Many of these spots earned their names by way of old legends…

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When hiking in the mountains, you’re often reminded to stick to the trails to protect alpine plants. But it’s not just diapensia or dwarf cinquefoil that’s eking out an existence in these high elevations. The rare northern bog lemming also calls some of our alpine environment home. This small mammal weighs just an ounce and…

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A predawn light has begun to brighten the eastern horizon, but I still need my headlamp as I scramble along under a cloak of maples and oaks. I make up time on a clear stretch of trail but immediately slow down again to avoid stumbling on loose stones. I’m hurrying because I’m late. I was…

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We awoke to a mist hanging over the water, creeping up the mountain on the opposite shore. It was a crisp fall morning, a little late in the season for most paddlers, and only a few hardy souls were out on Middle Saranac Lake, in New York State’s Adirondack Park. Even so, my 11-year-old nephew,…

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Paddling to an island offers the best of two worlds: the waterborne access of a canoe or kayak and the unfettered freedom of a hike. Islands can provide a remote picnic spot, a chance to stretch your legs or nap in the sun, and a temporary escape from the bustle of the mainland. Lucky for…

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My first visit to the alpine zone in New Hampshire’s White Mountains was on Mount Washington. I was 15 years old, surviving day three of a high school orientation camping trip. The challenge of climbing several thousand feet to stand atop an iconic peak filled me with a sense of accomplishment. While the summit view…

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Long trails ranging from hundreds to thousands of miles connect some of the Northeast’s and Mid-Atlantic’s most treasured public lands. While some hikers cover a long trail’s full distance in one extended effort, others carve out day hikes or multiday backpacking trips. The segments below provide excellent introductions to eight long trails. 1. Cohos Trail …

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The New Hampshire 4,000-footers list—and other checklists of high peaks—motivate hikers to climb lesser-known mountains. But what about the many great 3,000-foot summits? Here are eight highly recommended hikes that even peakbaggers might want to seek out. Mount Coe and South Brother  |  Baxter State Park, Maine Though just shy of the 4,000-foot mark, Mount Coe…

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Swish, swish. Swish, swish. Our skis whisked across the glossy white surface of a field at Dolly Copp campground in New Hampshire’s White Mountain National Forest. On this chilly, early spring morning, the campground was otherwise silent and empty. I followed two old friends, Brian and Val, eastward across the snow. In the distance lay…

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Last summer I took a cabin full of 11- and 12-year-old campers on a hike. Most of them had never hiked before, so we went to nearby Sabattus Mountain in Lovell, Maine. The 1.4-mile loop gains just over 1,000 feet of elevation. The hike was so easy that I almost felt guilty for being rewarded…

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