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Category Archives: Experience

A Day in the Life: AMC Trail Crew

Ever wonder about the trails we hike on? Their history, who made them, who maintains them. I know that some of us personally volunteer to maintain trails. The US Forest Service works hard on some and also manages some of the volunteers. Also, there are volunteer organizations like the Trailwrights, and last but not least, the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC). The AMC maintains hundreds of miles […]

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22 Winter Alpine Travel Tips

Tired of the trees, you find you’re ready to bust out of the krummholz and explore some of the summits located in the alpine zone. But you’re a little uneasy about it. You’ve heard the stories, read accounts of people’s dying days, and there before you, right next to the trail, a sign warning of the perils that can lie ahead. We won’t lie and tell […]

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Coming Home Alive

It’s sometimes fun to gently tease clients by announcing that we have made it half way just as we’re summiting or meeting our day’s so-called objective. They’re tired and have been “earning it” all morning so some wear a look of horror when they hear these words even though it’s clear — if we’re not in a whiteout — there is no more up. Others just […]

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The Boott Spur Option

When leading on Mt Washington, barring the few I know that regularly work the west side (which we do as well on many occasions), professional guides generally lead groups up the Tuckerman Ravine Trail, hop onto either the winter or summer route of the Lion Head Trail, then get back onto Tuckerman Ravine Trail for the push to the summit before reversing direction for the exit. […]

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Starting Out in the Whites

Every year hundreds if not thousands of people who have never been here come to the White Mountain National Forest to hike. For some they discover the trails and see how accessible our mountains appear to be while here for another reason, while others come here specifically to hike knowing the area’s reputation for stunning natural beauty, often not realizing that the trails can be really […]

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Modeling Best Practices

The list on this page was created by Mike Cherim, a Class One Leader, for the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) and was immediately and unanimously adopted by the New Hampshire Chapter. It is believed that this list is now part of the New Leader’s Welcome Packet. It was felt that the AMC, as an outdoor group, should ensure its leaders always strive to model the best […]

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Science Behind the Hike

Have you heard the term “just put one foot in front of the other?” This is a psychological helper designed to help us get through the mental challenges of hiking and similar activities, but hiking, mountain walking, or tramping as some say, is so much more than simply plodding along dragging our carcass behind us. There’s actually a science behind how we move. Many if not […]

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Backcountry Medical Response

Every serious, quasi-regular hiker should have some level of first-aid knowledge. Specifically, unless you’re a guide and have your Wilderness First Responder (WFR) or Wilderness Emergency Medical Technician (WEMT) card, you should probably test for your Wilderness First Aid (WFA) card, to include Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation/Automatic Electronic Defibrillator (CPR/AED) training. This will empower you to better tend to yourself, others in your party, and anyone you may […]

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Tough Mountain Choices

Go or no-go, that is the question. You’ve been hiking and climbing for hours. You’ve gotten to treeline. Now you have a choice to make. You hate to give up after all the time, effort, and money you’ve invested so far — which might also include air fare, hotels, even your coveted vacation time — but the conditions on the mountain are what we might call […]

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Taking to the Winter Trails

The winter hiking season is just around the corner. Soon we will be pushing through slick leaves and the hazards they conceal — as if that isn’t dangerous enough — and almost immediately after that we will be making our way through snow, dealing with winter’s inherent dangers. As many prefer, actually. The walking, after all, is generally easier (unless you’re packing out a trail through […]

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Prep for a Mt Washington Climb

This is a copy of an article I wrote last year. I thought it might look nice here. You may have been tossing the idea around, perhaps debating with yourself — you know, about Climbing Mt Washington in the Winter. Maybe you’ve been wondering if you have what it takes, physically and mentally. Perhaps you’ve had concerns about the mountain’s well-documented dangers (it is one of […]

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Climbing Mt Washington in Winter

This is a copy of an article I wrote in 2015. I thought it might look nice here: The training is done, the gear packed, and the stoke is on… all is ready. Sure, the forecast could be better, as often is the case on the deceptive 6288′ Mt Washington — the highest point in the Northeast and notorious for its extreme weather — but the […]

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