Appalachian Mountain Club

Last updated
Appalachian Mountain Club
Formation1876 (1876)
Founder Edward Charles Pickering
Type Non-governmental organization
04-6001677 [1]
Legal status 501(c)(3) charitable organization [1]
PurposeEnvironmental quality, protection, and beautification [1]
Headquarters 10 City Square,
Boston, Massachusetts [2]
Coordinates 42°22′20″N71°03′42″W / 42.3723°N 71.0616°W / 42.3723; -71.0616
Northeastern United States and Mid-Atlantic United States
ServicesEnvironmental Education and Outdoor Survival Programs [1]
Membership (2016)
275,000 members, advocates, and supporters [3]
Nicole Zussman [4]
Yvette Austin Smith [4]
Subsidiaries AMC Maine Woods Initiative, LLC
AMC MW Funding, LLC
KI-Jo Mary, Inc. [5]
Revenue (2017)
Decrease2.svg $33,070,020 [5]
Expenses (2017)Increase Negative.svg $31,787,810 [5]
Endowment (2018)Decrease2.svg $60,863,607 [6]
Staff (2017)
Increase2.svg 807 [5]
Volunteers (2017)
Steady2.svg 16,000 [5]

Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) is the oldest outdoor group in the United States. [7] Created in 1876 to explore and preserve the White Mountains in New Hampshire, it has expanded throughout the northeastern U.S., with 12 chapters stretching from Maine to Washington, D.C. The AMC's 100,000 members, its advocates, and supporters (as of 2023) [3] mix outdoor recreation, particularly hiking and backpacking, with environmental activism. Additional activities include cross-country skiing, whitewater and flatwater canoeing and kayaking, sea kayaking, sailing, rock climbing and bicycle riding. The Club has about 2,700 volunteers, who lead roughly 7,000 trips and activities per year. The organization publishes a number of books, guides, and trail maps.



AMC's former headquarters at 5 Joy Street, Boston, Massachusetts. AMC 1876. 5 Joy Street, Boston, MA.JPG
AMC's former headquarters at 5 Joy Street, Boston, Massachusetts.

Appalachian Mountain Club was organized in 1876, incorporated in 1878, and authorized by legislative act of 1894 to hold mountain and forest lands as historic sites. [8] The club was formed by the efforts of Massachusetts Institute of Technology Professor Edward Charles Pickering and Samuel Hubbard Scudder, [9] who invited fellow Boston academics and vacationers to form a group interested in mountain exploration. The club aims to preserve the beauty of mountain forests, waters, historic sites and resorts; to render them attractive to visitors and excursionists; to publish accurate maps thereof; and to collect scientific data concerning the mountains. [8] [10] The group helped map the White Mountains and in 1888 built the first of eight High Huts in the range, modeled on Alpine shelters.

Though it's the oldest mountain club in America, the AMC was preceded by the Rocky Mountain Club (1875), White Mountain Club (1873), the Alpine Club of Williamstown (1863), and The Exploring Circle (1850). Each of these were short-lived organizations. [11]

In 2003, Appalachian Mountain Club purchased 37,000 acres (15,000 ha) of land east of Moosehead Lake and southwest of Baxter State Park, along the 100-Mile Wilderness portion of the Appalachian Trail, as part of their Maine Woods Initiative. It has converted the Katahdin Iron Works portion of the purchase to a nature preserve, logged a portion, and runs a sporting camp called Little Lyford Pond camps about two miles (3 km) off the trail. The Club purchased an adjacent 4,300 acres (1,700 ha), including Baker Mountain, in 2015, [12] [13] and is considering purchasing more sporting camps in the vicinity. [14]

In 2011, the Appalachian Mountain Club opened the newly built Gorman Chairback Lodge. [15]

In September 2016, the Appalachian Mountain Club sold their Joy Street headquarters to a group of real estate investors for $15 million, who planned to turn the 22,000 square feet of office space on Beacon Hill into residential units. [16] In December 2016, The Appalachian Mountain Club purchased Roughan Hall in the Charlestown neighborhood of Boston, [17] and moved their headquarters there in September 2017. [18]

In 2022, the AMC purchased another 27,000 acres (11,000 ha) adjacent to their previous holdings near the 100 Mile Wilderness, bringing the total to over 100,000 acres (40,000 ha) of contiguous land. [19]


Appalachian Mountain Club's headquarters is located in Roughan Hall at 10 City Square in the Charlestown neighborhood of Boston, with an adjunct facility at 6 Spice St. [18]

Appalachian Mountain Club employed 807 individuals in 2017. [5] AMC estimated that 16,000 individuals volunteered for the organization in 2017. [5]

In 2017, the Appalachian Mountain Club earned over $15.2 million from its outdoor program centers, educational activities, membership dues, trail activities, and advertising. [5] Sale of products netted over $780,000, rental income netted over $240,000, investment income was over $2.8 million, and charitable contributions received were almost $14.0 million. [5]

Appalachian Mountain Club has twelve chapters located in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Washington, D.C. The largest chapter is the Boston chapter, with over 20,000 members, [20] followed by the New Hampshire chapter with over 12,000 members, [21] and the New York-North Jersey chapter with over 10,000 members. [22]


The High Huts

Looking south on the Franconia Ridge Trail. FranconiaRidgeTrail.jpg
Looking south on the Franconia Ridge Trail.

Appalachian Mountain Club owns and maintains a series of eight mountain huts in the White Mountains. Modeled after similar shelters in the Alps, the various huts hold between 36 and 90 people. Hikers may reserve bunks; at most huts dinner and breakfast are included.

The huts' 30-year special use permits were renewed by the U.S. Forest Service in 1999 following a four-year process that included an environmental impact statement. [23]

Campsites and shelters

The Appalachian Mountain Club also operates many campsites and shelters in the White Mountains, the Mahoosucs, and other New England locations. [24] These campsites are often run by caretakers who manage waste, fees, and nearby trails. Nine of the highest use campsites have a $15 per person fee: Kinsman Pond, Liberty Spring, Garfield Ridge, 13 Falls, Guyot, Ethan Pond, Nauman, Imp, and Speck Pond.

AMC Fall Foliage Trip in the Adirondacks Adirondack Fall Foliage Trip.jpg
AMC Fall Foliage Trip in the Adirondacks


The majority of the AMC's activities are conducted by its members who volunteer to lead trips throughout the northeast, from Maine to DC. Activities include hiking, backpacking, paddling, biking, rock climbing, camping, skiing, and snowshoeing, ranging in duration from a day to a week. Additional long-duration domestic and international trips are conducted through the AMC's Adventure Travel program.


The club also operates several trails operations. The Volunteer for Trails program brings teens and adults on day to week long programs teaching trail building and maintenance techniques based out of Camp Dodge in Pinkham Notch. [25] The Roving Conservation Crew is a small crew which works on both backcountry and frontcountry projects around New England. The White Mountain Professional Trail Crew focuses on trail projects within the White Mountains, and the Maine Woods Professional Crew focuses on projects in Maine.

A committee of Appalachian Mountain Club administers the Four Thousand Footer Club. Anyone who has climbed to and from each of the 48 New Hampshire Four-thousand footers is eligible to apply for membership to the club. Members are given a patch and new inductees are invited to attend a yearly celebration dinner. The Four Thousand Footer Club also recognizes individuals who complete the New England Four Thousand Footers (of which there are 67) and the New England Hundred Highest.


Appalachia, the club journal, has been published since 1876. [26] Books relating to subjects such as mountaineering and touring trips are published under the auspices of the society. [8]

National Register of Historic Places

The Club's Ponkapoag Camp is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

See also

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Appalachian Trail</span> Hiking trail going through fourteen US states

The Appalachian Trail, also called the A.T., is a hiking trail in the Eastern United States, extending almost 2,200 miles (3,540 km) between Springer Mountain in Georgia and Mount Katahdin in Maine, and passing through 14 states. The Appalachian Trail Conservancy claims the Appalachian Trail to be the longest hiking-only trail in the world. More than three million people hike segments of the trail each year.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">White Mountains (New England)</span> Mountain range in New Hampshire and Maine, United States

The White Mountains are a mountain range covering about a quarter of the state of New Hampshire and a small portion of western Maine in the United States. They are a subrange of the northern Appalachian Mountains and the most rugged mountains in New England. Several of the higher peaks contain an Alpine tundra. The range is heavily visited due to its proximity to Boston, New York City, and Montreal.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Mount Monadnock</span> Mountain in New Hampshire, USA

Mount Monadnock, or Grand Monadnock, is a mountain in the towns of Jaffrey and Dublin, New Hampshire. It is the most prominent mountain peak in southern New Hampshire and is the highest point in Cheshire County. It lies 38 miles (61 km) southwest of Concord and 62 miles (100 km) northwest of Boston. At 3,165 feet (965 m), Mount Monadnock is nearly 1,000 feet (305 m) higher than any other mountain peak within 30 miles (48 km) and rises 2,000 feet (610 m) above the surrounding landscape. Monadnock's bare, isolated, and rocky summit provides expansive views. It is known for being featured in the writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Mount Adams (New Hampshire)</span> Mountain in New Hampshire, United States

Mount Adams, elevation 5,793 feet (1,766 m) above sea level, is a mountain in New Hampshire, the second highest peak in the Northeast United States after its nearby neighbor, Mount Washington. Located in the northern Presidential Range, Mount Adams was named after John Adams, the second President of the United States. It was given this name on July 31, 1820. To the northeast is Mount Madison and to the southwest is Mount Jefferson. From the summit, Mount Washington can be seen directly to the south.

The Four-thousand footers are a group of forty-eight mountains in New Hampshire at least 4,000 feet (1,200 m) above sea level. To qualify for inclusion a peak must also meet the more technical criterion of topographic prominence important in the mountaineering sport of peak-bagging.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Mount Monroe</span> Mountain in the American state of New Hampshire

Mount Monroe is a 5,372-foot-high (1,637 m) mountain peak southwest of Mount Washington in the Presidential Range of the White Mountains in New Hampshire, United States. It is named for American President James Monroe and is the fourth highest mountain on the 4000 footers list for New Hampshire. The Appalachian Trail skirts its summit, which is the next highest peak on or near the trail north of Mount Rogers in Virginia. The Lakes of the Clouds, and its AMC hut, lie nestled at the col between Mount Monroe and neighboring Mount Washington.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">High Huts of the White Mountains</span> Mountain huts in New Hampshire

The High Huts of the White Mountains are eight mountain huts in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, owned and maintained by the Appalachian Mountain Club. They are modeled after similar huts in the Alps and positioned at intervals along the Appalachian Trail, allowing "thru-hikers" who hike the entire Appalachian Trail to benefit from their services. They are generally separated by six to eight miles, about a day's hike.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Bean's Grant, New Hampshire</span> Township in Coos County, New Hampshire, United States

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<span class="mw-page-title-main">East Peak Mount Osceola</span> Mountain in New Hampshire, USA

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<span class="mw-page-title-main">Wildcat Mountain (New Hampshire)</span>

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<span class="mw-page-title-main">Mount Passaconaway</span>

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<span class="mw-page-title-main">Mount Zealand</span> Mountain in New Hampshire

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<span class="mw-page-title-main">Mount Willey</span> Mountain in the state of New Hampshire

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<span class="mw-page-title-main">Galehead Mountain</span> Mountain in the state of New Hampshire

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The Little Lyford Pond camps is a historic logging camp located in the Maine Woods.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Carter Notch</span> Mountain pass in New Hampshire, US

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  1. 1 2 3 4 "Charity Navigator - Appalachian Mountain Club". Charity Navigator. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  2. "Contact Us". Appalachian Mountain Club. Retrieved 5 October 2017.
  3. 1 2 "Appalachian Mountain Club Summary of 2016 Annual Report" (PDF). Appalachian Mountain Club.
  4. 1 2 "Staff and Chapter Leadership". Appalachian Mountain Club. Retrieved on December 14, 2016.
  5. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 "Form 990: Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax". Appalachian Mountain Club. 9 November 2018.
  6. "2017 Consolidated Financial Statements Years Ended December 31, 2018 and 2017". Appalachian Mountain Club. 7 June 2019.
  7. "AMC Fact Sheet" (PDF). Appalachian Mountain Club.
  8. 1 2 3 One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain :  Gilman, D. C.; Peck, H. T.; Colby, F. M., eds. (1905). "Appalachian Mountain Club"  . New International Encyclopedia (1st ed.). New York: Dodd, Mead.
  9. Leach, William (2013) Butterfly People: An American Encounter with the Beauty of the World Pantheon Books ISBN   9780375422935
  10. Rines, George Edwin, ed. (1920). "Appalachian Mountain Club"  . Encyclopedia Americana .
  11. Axelson, Gustave (13 April 2016). "Bushwhacking Up Maine's Baker Mountain". The New York Times . Retrieved 15 August 2018.
  12. Sarnacki, Aislinn (6 March 2015). "Group preserves Baker Mountain, surrounding land in $2.4 million purchase". Bangor Daily News. Retrieved 15 August 2018.
  13. Jermanok, Stephen (2006-09-24). "Delicate Terrain". The Boston Globe Magazine. The Boston Globe . Retrieved 2006-09-24.
  14. "Gorman Chairback Lodge & Cabins | AMC". Appalachian Mountain Club. Retrieved 2020-07-20.
  15. Adams, Dan (2016-09-26). "Appalachian Mountain Club sells Beacon Hill headquarters for $15m". The Boston Globe . Retrieved 2016-09-27.
  16. "Appalachian Mountain Club Opens New Boston Headquarters". AMC Outdoors. Appalachian Mountain Club. 18 September 2017. Retrieved 28 September 2017.
  17. 1 2 "Appalachian Mountain Club Opens New Boston Headquarters". AMC Outdoors (Press release). Appalachian Mountain Club. 18 September 2017. Retrieved 28 September 2017.
  18. Fleming, Deirdre (31 August 2022). "Appalachian Mountain Club purchases 27,000 acres in Moosehead Lake region". Portland Press Herald . Retrieved 31 August 2022.
  19. "AMC Boston Chapter - AMC Boston Chapter". 28 June 2021. Retrieved 4 December 2022.
  20. "Home". AMC NH Chapter. Retrieved 4 December 2022.
  21. "Home". The New York - North Jersey Chapter of the Appalachian Mountain Club. Retrieved 4 December 2022.
  22. "Delicate Terrain - The Boston Globe". Retrieved 4 December 2022.
  23. "Backcountry Camping Sites in the Northeast". Appalachian Mountain Club. Retrieved 29 January 2018.
  24. "Trails". Appalachian Mountain Club. Retrieved 29 January 2018.
  25. "Appalachia". Dartmouth Digital Commons. Dartmouth College.

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