Walks

Flipping pancakes with my 11-year old daughter Tasha on a cold December morning recently, we saw a group of wild turkeys outside pecking at the bittersweet berries along our stone wall. I grabbed my cup of coffee after breakfast and we headed out to watch them. We quickly found their three-toed tracks in the driveway,…

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Sara Sloan slips off her mitten and uses her thumb to dial in the right track on her iPod. She holds the tiny speakers up and hits play. Deep, resonant hooting wafts out: “Who. Hoot, who, who.” The call of a great horned owl. The 12 of us stand silently in the dark woods, waiting…

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Walking has long been recognized as an inexpensive and accessible form of physical activity. A new study finds that walking can also improve mental health—and that walking with a group can enhance this impact. Study co-authors Katherine Irvine, Melissa Marselle, and Sara Warber wanted to quantify the effect of nature on health and mental well-being…

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With new Apple watches and whiz-bang wearable devices that monitor your daily activity, you could spend hundreds on devices and programs to stay fit. Or you could just reach for your smartphone—all at once it can be your personal trainer, calorie counter, and route log, as long as you download the right apps. These five…

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Three large black walnut trees stand in a perfect line, parallel to the side of a home in Wenham, Mass. An old rope swing dangles from a lofty branch. The owner says her kids sometimes bounce on the swing to dislodge walnuts from high above. Hundreds of the nuts litter the lawn. Russ Cohen kicks…

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Bring your family to the Berkshires of western Massachusetts for bountiful summer wildflowers, rambling hikes and bicycle rides, and real dinosaur footprints that will fascinate young T. rex fans. Here are four suggestions for your next outdoor getaway. Ice Glen and Laura’s Tower in Stockbridge, Mass. Author Nathaniel Hawthorne called Ice Glen, which is just…

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Leading kids through the woods requires more than a map and compass. You also need enthusiasm and creativity to keep things fun for young hikers, whether they’re preschoolers who tire easily or older children who claim they’re bored. Try these strategies to keep kids interested when out on the trail. ACTIVE PLAY Walk This Way:…

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Join Nicky Pizzo, an AMC senior naturalist and program manager, on a nature walk around AMC’s Cardigan Lodge and up to the summit of Mount Cardigan, in southern New Hampshire. Watch more videos from the Nature Walk series and browse all AMC videos on YouTube.  

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The soles of your shoes can tell you a lot about how you walk. Take a well-worn shoe and examine the wear pattern on the sole. This will quickly indicate how your feet strike the ground and how your feet move as you complete each step. Shoes with some tread (hiking boots, running shoes) are…

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Just outside of Boston, the Minuteman Commuter Bikeway runs 10 miles from the quiet suburban town of Bedford to the bustling edge of Cambridge. I ride the length of this paved rail-trail nearly every weekday to work and back again—more than 6,000 miles to date, and counting. Beneath shady woods, alongside tranquil meadows, past landmarks…

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