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Exploring the world of trails, huts and other shelter systems (e.g. inns, B&B's, hostels, cabins, yurts, tents, pods, tree houses, caves, etc.) supporting long distance walkers & skiers → how they operate around the world → honoring & learning from the people who start & operate them → building international community and conversation → towards a sustainable, environmentally sensitive outdoor accommodations & education infrastructure for USA → all in service to cultivating environmental education and a broad-based ethos of biophilia through immersive experiences in the natural world.

Dolent Hut, Swiss Alpine Club. Photo courtesy Marcon Volken.
Sutherlands Hut, interior
Blue Range Hut built by Masterton Tramping Club in 1958
Sign of the Packhorse Hut, government built (1916) tourism and climbing hut, originally built as one of four backcountry teahouses.
Ivory Lake Hut, a science hut constructed to support a team of glaciologists and hydrologists studying this retreating glacier.
Waipakihi Hut, Lockwood style architecture, NZ Forest Service
Roaring Stag Lodge II, originally built by a club, NZ Deerstalkers Association, over a period of four years.  Rebuilt by DOC in 2005.
Associated with the 1966-67 Freedom Walks on Milford Track
Broome Hut In Summer - D Maddox photo
Sutherlands Hut, built 1860's - a former boundary keepers hut
Frew Saddle Bivouac, two bunk bivvy built for NZ Forest Service deer cullers
Tarn Ridge Hut, 16 bunk replacement high mountain built by DOC
Asbestos Hut, mining hut, 1914, for 36 years the home of two lovers who exiled themselves here to escape unhappy marriages.
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Archive | Books/resources

New Zealand Huts

Shelter from the Storm – Introduction to a book about history of New Zealand Huts

Below is a reprint of the “Introduction” to the book:  Shelter From The Storm: The Story of New Zealand’s Backcountry Huts 2012, Craig Potton Publishing, Nelson, NZ. Text and most photographs by Shaun Barnett, Rob Brown, and Geoff Spearpoint. Embedded below is the 14 page, beautifully illustrated “Introduction”, by Shaun Barnett, to the remarkable book […]

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Shelter from the Storm: The Story of New Zealand’s Backcountry Huts: book review, part two

Book review continued: Shelter From The Storm: The Story of New Zealand’s Backcountry Huts (Part two of a two part book review) 2012, Craig Potton Publishing, Nelson, NZ. Text and most photographs by Shaun Barnett, Rob Brown, and Geoff Spearpoint. For part one of this review click here.  Following are some fascinating themes and stories that […]

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Shelter from the Storm

Shelter from the Storm: The Story of New Zealand’s Backcountry Huts: book review, part 1

Book Review by Sam Demas: Shelter From The Storm: The Story of New Zealand’s Backcountry Huts (Part one of a two part book review) 2012, Craig Potton Publishing, Nelson, NZ. Text and most photographs by Shaun Barnett, Rob Brown, and Geoff Spearpoint. With a single highly-organized system of 1,000 backcountry huts New Zealand (NZ) — […]

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News: Great New Yorker article about Via Alpina and the hut-to-hut experience

Poet, writer and walker James Lasdun has published a wonderful exploration of the delights and challenges of the famous Via Alpina, and the experience of walking hut-to-hut.  Published in the April 11, 2016 issue of the New Yorker magazine, this is a delightful and serious essay on the Via Alpina, a trail that wends its way through […]

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Book Review: “The Hut Builder”, by Laurence Fearnley

Published by Penguin Books New Zealand, 2010 With 950 huts in a nation the size of Oregon, huts are a vital part of New Zealand’s landscape and imagination.  What I loved most about this novel, in addition to this it’s sensitive portrayal of the life story of a quiet poet-butcher named Boden Black, was an even quieter […]

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Book Review: “The Old Ways” by Robert Macfarlane

Book Review by Reidun D. Nuquist Robert Macfarlane, The Old Ways: A Journey on Foot (Penguin Books, New York, 2012). 433 pp., $18.00 paperback. This elegantly written book by Robert Macfarlane is about “how people understand themselves using landscape.” Or put another way, how “we are shaped by the landscape through which we move.” This […]

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(c) Marco Volken

Book Review: New Monte Rosa Hut Swiss Alpine Club

Review by Sam Demas; for pictures of Monte Rosa Hut, see photo gallery Hut design is a prized architectural specialty in Switzerland, and this book is a prism through which to view this specialty — as well as to learn about the remarkable New Monte Rosa Hut.   This beautifully produced book comprises 6 thoughtful introductory essays providing historical and architectural […]

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“A Hut in the Wild”: essays on huts from down under

Book notice of “Hut in the Wild” by Dianne Johnson, with a link to chapter one Hut as Inscape“. Dianne Johnson’s quirky, delightful, and inspiring book Hut in the Wild (www.loveofbooks.com.au, 2011) explores the hut as an archetype, “a cabin of the imagination, and inscape, it is redolent of a lost paradise regained, a gleaner’s bliss….and sometimes […]

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New journal published: “World of Trails”

The World Trails Network (WTN) has published the first issue of “World of Trails”.  Robert Searns, editor, states in his welcome note: This publication is the first global resource of its kind, serving trail advocates, designers, planners, trail managers, tourism industry professionals, national economic development agencies and, of course, trail enthusiasts from around the world.  Our goal is […]

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Book Review: Huts of the Swiss Alpine Club

The Huts of the Swiss Alpine Club by Marco Volken and Remo Kundert AS Verlag, 2013.  WOW.…a comprehensive view of the world’s premier hut-to-hut hiking systems! This is a luscious feast for trip planners, armchair trekkers, architecture mavens, and dreamers and designers of future hut systems in America and elsewhere! Take a taste right now: […]

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Book review: “Walking Distance” by Robert and Martha Manning

Walking Distance: Extraordinary Hikes for Ordinary People, by Robert and Martha Manning, Oregon State University Press, 2013 The message of this beautiful, intelligent, and highly readable book is: long distance walking is within the walking distance of ordinary folks.  Walking Distance makes the unique and primeval pleasures of long distance walking seem accessible to the […]

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Book review: “Bold Spirit: Helga Estby’s Forgotten Walk Across Victorian America”

In an attempt to prevent foreclosure on the family farm, Helga Estby and her daughter Clara, ages 36 and 18, walked from Spokane, WA to New York City in 1896. They walked over 3,500 miles in 7 months and 18 days. Taking into account stops “aggregating about two months” to work and to recover from […]

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