RMC Newsletter Archive - Trails Articles

A Brief History of Trails
By Judith Maddock Hudson, Summer 2003

"Up until 1941 the Club hired local woodsmen for trail maintenance, often contracting the job through John Boothman who then himself hired local labor. Volunteer work parties were also a regular summer activity, mostly to clear blowdowns and brush the paths."

A History of RMC Excursions
By Judith Maddock Hudson, Winter 2007-2008

"From the 1940s to the present, excursions have generally been held twice weekly, on Tuesdays and Thursdays. The latter have been variously titled "junior walks," "children's climbs," or "short hikes," but were intended for a less athletic clientele than the more strenuous Tuesday hikes."

A Mount Crescent Trailhead?
By Doug Mayer, Summer 2008

"If secured, the land could provide a safe, permanent trailhead at the very end of Randolph Hill Road. Access to the Mount Crescent Trail, Carlton Notch Trail and Cook Path would start at a small new parking area just north of the end of the road."

A Study of RMC's Winter Visitors
By John Pereira, Winter 2004-2005

"I approached the Randolph Mountain Club and the White Mountain National Forest and asked if they would be interested in having me conduct a winter impact assessment of the Northern Presidential Range..."

Being a Trails Steward - On and Off the Trail
By Doug Mayer, Summer 2009

"The healthy upkeep of RMC’s paths requires more than our hard-working trail crews, or eager, clipper-wielding volunteers. It is truly a much broader endeavor that calls upon the thoughtful efforts of a trails community."

Building the New Four Soldiers Path and Underhill Path
By Aaron Parcak, Winter 2002-2003

"With food in our bellies and packs strapped on we walk down the puddle filled logging road towards the work site. We arrive at the blue tarp, unwrapping the large burrito to reveal an array of trail building tools..."

Challenge in the White Mountains
By Judith Maddock Hudson, Summer 2006

"In today's world, a challenge - whether the marathon, triathlon, or another extreme adventure - has become an important part of the amateur athlete's repertoire. Club members are hardly immune to this frenzy. Indeed, for well over a century, Randolphians have been at the forefront in creating mountain adventures that emphasize physical endurance or speed."

Designing RMC's New Paths
By Carl Demrow, Winter 2002-2003

"Trails today are designed, first, with the resource itself in mind. Minimizing grade, strictly avoiding the “fall line” (the path a ball would take if you were to roll it down a hill) and staying out of wet areas are paramount."

First 'RMC 100' Finishers
By Randy Meiklejohn, Winter 2010-2011

"Walking all the RMC trails in a short amount of time was something I had wanted to try since I first started working up here in 2000.  In past years I had been too busy hiking them while patrolling or working for the RMC.  I set out on four early mornings in June, just after the solstice..."

Formalizing Handshakes: First RMC Trails Easement
By Samarjit Shankar, Summer 2007

"Today a significant proportion of RMC trails crossing private lands lack adequate legal protection. Why would they require legal protection, one may ask? Having allowed their construction in the first place, why wouldn’t Randolph landowners continue to allow the RMC to maintain trails on their properties?"

Four Soldiers Path and Underhill Path Trail Descriptions
By Steve Smith, Summer 2003

"This new trail, located on land recently acquired by the Town of Randolph and the White Mountain National Forest, leads from the Pasture Path, 1.5 mi. west of its trailhead on Pasture Path Rd., over the Crescent Range to the Pond of Safety Trail, 0.3 mi. from the pond..."

Gulfside Trail Maintenance Agreement
By Mike Micucci, Summer 2011

"Ultimately, the ATC board of directors agreed that the RMC was a good fit, and voted to transfer maintenance of a 2.2-mile section of the Gulfside Trail, between Madison Hut and Edmands Col, from the USFS to the RMC."

Living in Bear Country -- On and Off the Trail
By Doug Mayer, Winter 2005-2006

One of the seven LNT principles is to “Respect Wildlife.” One of the most important means we have of respecting wildlife is keeping our food sources separate from their food.

Memories of Trail Crew, 1951
By Christopher Harris, Summer 2007

"Early in the summer it was learned that the arrival of the Crag Camp caretaker would be delayed, and I was instructed to get the hut ready for visitors in his stead. Up the Spur Trail I went with what gear and provisions I could carry, feeling quite ill-equipped for the task. In hooking up the water supply from the nearby spring, I discovered that a section of pipe had burst during the winter..."

Mount Adams
By Will Strayhorn, Summer 2004

"While looking out on the magnificent mountains, I noted how wonderful they were. As I stood there, hunger rumbled in my stomach, and the wind blew hard on my face..."

Mount Crescent Trailhead Project Underway
By Doug Mayer, Summer 2009

"In just a few short months, much has transpired. An active committee is now hard at work. Members of the committee represent a broad cross-section of the Randolph Community..."

Mount Crescent Trailhead Project Underway
By Lydia Goetze, Winter 2008-2009

"Becky Boothman has continued her family's legacy of involvement with and concern for Randolph's hiking community by making a 10 acre parcel on Randolph Hill available for purchase with the intent that it be added to the Randolph Community Forest and provide a permanent trailhead for access to the Mount Crescent Range trails..."

Mt. Crescent Trailhead and RMC Trail Relocations
By Mike Micucci, Summer 2012

"As we move ahead into the next trail work season, our eyes, feet and hands are moving toward the upcoming relocation of the Mt. Crescent Trail, the Cook Path and the closing of the lower portion of the Boothman Spring Cut-off.  All of this is in anticipation of construction of the new trailhead at the very end of Randolph Hill Road..."

Randolph's Early Pathmakers, 1850-1905
By Judith Maddock Hudson, Summer 2005

"The first explorations of the Northern Peaks had started earlier, around 1850, when hardy walkers engaged mountain guides to take them up Madison, Adams, and Jefferson. James Gordon of Gorham was the most sought-after guide, and it was he who led the 26-year-old Reverend Thomas Starr King's party in 1857..."

Tales from the Trails: Paul and the Bear Cub
By Kathy Tremblay, Winter 2005-2006

"This past summer, Paul was on an early evening run along Pasture Path, when, from the corner of his eye, he saw a small bear cub skitter up a tree as fast as he could climb..."

Tales from the Trails: Wild Dogs
By Kathy Tremblay, Winter 2004-2005

"Soon, however, I knew I wasn’t alone. I heard footsteps – a lot of them – very stealthily moving on either side of the trail..."

The Ice Gulch - Perennial Ice in the White Mountains
By David Holmgren and Andreas Pflitsch, Summer 2012

"A hiker’s first visit to the Ice Gulch is a special experience, especially in summer when the stark differences between the Ice Gulch and the surrounding area are readily evident.  Some people describe this experience as like entering a cold storage house.  The Ice Gulch is a cold place, even colder than the station on the Mount Washington Auto Road at 2300 feet..."

The Life of a Path
By Doug Mayer, Summer 2005

"In other words, it’s the trip that matters more than the destination. And, perhaps nowhere else in the White Mountains are there such an abundance of paths where it’s the journey, and not the destination, that matters."

The Paradoxes of Trail Work
By Doug Mayer, Winter 2003-2004

"Trail work can be quite a paradoxical undertaking. We pour labor and, sometimes, man-made materials into modifying a path - with the goal of protecting a natural experience."

"The RMC 100"
By Randy Meiklejohn, Summer 2010

"Are you long since done with the AMC Four-Thousand Footer List? Both summer and winter? And your dog has finished the list too? Already checked off your visits to every RMC and AMC hut in the White Mountains?"

Trail Blazers
By Genevra Pittman, Winter 2003-2004

"She hasn't had much trouble with a lack of activity recently. The crew works Monday through Friday, usually from about 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., although depending on the current project, they may not arrive back at camp until after dark."

Trail Easements: A Landowner's Perspective
By Samarjit Shankar, Summer 2011

"My suggestion to other landowners with trails on their property is to carefully consider granting an easement, making sure that the location does not interfere with current and future uses of the surrounding land. A trail relocation may facilitate the process if considered necessary."

Trail Signs
By Mike Micucci, Winter 2011-2012

"Now, just where does the wood come from? Well, I’m glad you asked. When the RMC was looking for a source for sign wood, we wanted someone with experience, so we went with a company a little older even than us. Wilkins Lumber, in Milford, NH was started in 1808, so they know a little bit about wood..."

Trail Work Above the Trees
By Leslie Ham, Winter 2007-2008

"A well-placed cairn is of the utmost importance in the alpine zone. They should be placed so they can be seen with the sky as a contrasting background, close enough to the trail so that hikers don’t have to go off the tread way to follow them, but not..."

Trails Conservation Continues
By Samarjit Shankar, Summer 2011

"A trail easement helps record the landowner’s commitment to allowing the RMC trail on the land in perpetuity. At the same time, there is absolutely no ceding of rights to the RMC and the land still remains the property of the owner. The written agreement becomes part of the property title and will pass from one owner to the other..."

Volunteer Trail Days
By Michele Cormier, Winter 2011-2012

"If there is one word that defines the Randolph Mountain Club, that would be “volunteerism.” From the all-volunteer board to the multitude of folks who give their time and energy, our Club really functions due to volunteerism."

Wednesday "Volunteer Trail Days"
By Michele Cormier, Summer 2011

"The ‘non-technical’ work we’ll perform is vital routine maintenance that ensures our continued enjoyment of the trail system. It also protects the trails from erosion and ravages of time for future generations to enjoy."