The Vermont Huts Association is preparing to build its first hut as part of an emerging state-wide network linking existing huts. They report that they are exploring viable sites in Green Mountain National Forest to host a year-round facility capable of serving various outdoor enthusiasts, including hikers, mountain bikers, backcountry skiers, and snowshoers.
They also note that the IRS just granted them their official status as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
Please welcome Carolann Ouellette as Executive Director of Maine Huts & Trails! After a long and thorough search process, we found an exceptional leader. Currently serving as Director of the Maine Office of Tourism, she began her career right here in Carrabassett Valley, managing the Sugarloaf Inn, and also managed operations at New England Outdoor Center. A graduate of Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration, Carolann is uniquely well-qualified for this position. In 2015 she was named by Maine Magazine as one of “50 Mainers Boldly Leading Our State”, and she’s even a Registered Maine Guide. The future of Maine Huts & Trails is in good hands.
Backcountry Hut Company: Architectural Design & Business Model
by Sam Demas, October 12, 2016; All photos courtesy Backcountry Hut Company
The Canadian company Backcountry Hut Company (BHC) has completed its design and has constructed a prototype for a pre-fabricated, modular hut system. The design is optimized for alpine and other outdoor clubs, lodge operators, and also private outdoor recreation enthusiasts. Based on a conversation with BHC’s Wilson Edgar, this post is a brief description of the design concept, business model, and rollout plans.
Duane Gould, Joe Dadey, and Jack Drury – The Adirondacks Hamlets to Huts Team
Joe and Jack: pioneers in a culture awakening to the environmental benefits of huts
In 2013 Joe Dadey and Jack Drury came up with the idea of a lodging and trails system connecting Adirondack hamlets to huts. I’ve been following their quest as something of a model planning process for hut systems.
A new hut system, Adirondack Hamlets to Huts, appears to be coming together quickly. In 2015 the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) contacted Joe Dadey and Jack Drury to request that they propose and help to “fast-track” the implementation of a hut system in the Adirondack Park. In response to the DEC’s invitation, they produced a “Conceptual Plan for a Hut-to-Hut Destination-based Trail System” analyzing and ranking 26 potential routes. I reported on this plan last month.
Can retracing the path of one of the world’s most revered prophets help sow the seeds of peace and economic prosperity for communities in the Middle East? This is the question that Harvard professor William Ury sought to answer when, in 2004, he established the Abraham Path Initiative. Abraham was the exemplar of hospitality and preached kindness to strangers. The story of Abraham, or Ibrahim, is one of the most well known and revered by followers of Islam, Christianity, and Judaism. Indeed, it is through Abraham that these followers trace their ancestry and from the stories of his travels through the Middle East that many continue to find inspiration today. For Ury, these stories provided a particular kind of inspiration that saw the potential for finding common ground, and common ancestry, in the face of conflicts that have sought to tear the region apart. Thus was born the Abraham Path.
Amazing! Nan Shepherd, author of “The Living Mountain” — one of the finest books on mountains I’ve ever read — was selected by the Bank of Scotland to grace the five pound note. Not only is her beautiful visage featured, but several quotes from her elegant writings are included on the note.
What a testament to the literary culture in Scotland, and to that nation’s appreciation of mountains, walking and women! When will this sort of thing happen in USA?!
In the April 23, 2016 New York Times Ken Ilguna makes a case for implementing “Right to Roam” laws in USA similar to those in England, Sweden, and other European nations. Along the way he provides some useful comparative perspective on how different nations handle right to roam. In the end he acknowledges that right to roam legislation is unlikely to happen in the USA for several reasons, including:
1. the “takings” clause of the Fifth Amendment declares that private property cannot “be taken for public use, without just compensation.”, and