Winter Hiking

  Americans are stressed. Political and racial turmoil, economic instability, environmental calamity, and, of course, a global pandemic have contributed to what the American Psychological Association called a “national mental health crisis” in its 2020 Stress in America report, published in October. Nearly 4 out of 5 Americans surveyed (78 percent) said COVID-19 was a…

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People tend not to climb New Hampshire’s Owl’s Head Mountain on a whim. The remote mountain is deep in the heart of the Pemigewasset Wilderness, surrounded by some of the most popular summits in the White Mountains, and offers no view. But for those certain goal-setters, Owl’s Head is a vitally important summit. At 4,025…

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  The winter months are a busy time for search and rescue (SAR) personnel in the Northeast. The region’s famously unpredictable and brutal winter weather leads to many misadventures that require professional rescues—but the vast majority of these incidents are preventable. Careful planning and preparation can help you avoid the many scenarios that lead to…

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  Pockets of thick fog ebb and flow across the steep slope of false summits on the way up Saddleback, along the Appalachian Trail in Maine. I’ve been trying to keep my son in my sights, but the mountain seems to know my mission, and its futility. I look up again, and he’s gone. I…

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Viewing animals in their wild, natural habitat is one of the most thrilling aspects of hiking and outdoor adventure travel. Coming away with photos that expertly capture these moments, whether using a smartphone or expensive digital camera, can be difficult, and it’s frustrating to giddily flip through freshly taken wildlife photos only to discover that…

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  Many outdoor enthusiasts have long known that time outside makes you feel good. In fact, spending 120 minutes a week in green spaces boosts your well-being, according to a 2019 study published in the journal Nature. Whether you decide to walk around your neighborhood for 20 minutes a day, take up birdwatching in a…

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  Winter hiking is ideal for those who crave the peaceful, restorative qualities of being outdoors. The crowds of tourists that flock to popular trailheads in the summer and fall—along with the occasional swarms of black flies and mosquitos—tend to vanish with the last of the foliage. Add to that a blanket of pristine, white…

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Hiking in the winter demands more. More preparedness and more planning. More outdoor experience and ability, and—perhaps most easily overlooked—more time. The cold months require better decision-making and a more cautious mindset. The same trail you hiked in summer six months ago is a different world now. Just as a wind chill intensifies the cold,…

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  Maybe you’re feeling it already, fellow moms and dads: the dread of not knowing how you’re going to keep your kids occupied and active through the long Northeast winter and early spring. These feelings are expected and normal in a typical winter, let alone one where our social calendars are clear and mobility limited….

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  Leave No Trace is a practice that applies to any outdoor activity, providing hikers, bikers, skiers, and other users with the tools they need to ensure minimal impact on the environment during their trip. While this seven-principle strategy, developed by Boulder, Colo.-based Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics, applies to all seasons, winter…

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