Last Friday I had a chance to hike up to Lonesome Lake Hut, one of three huts that are open in winter. It was a glorious day, with blue skies, temps in the upper 30s, and a clear view of Franconia Ridge. As much as I love getting outdoors in winter, my main objective was to learn more about AMC’s hut naturalist programs and alpine ecosystem research. Senior Interpretive Naturalist Nancy Ritger brought me up to speed on how hut naturalists teach our summer guests about the unique plants, animals, and geology around each of our huts. Given the large number of families visiting Lonesome Lake each summer, programs tend to be tailored toward kids. Research Director Ken Kimball also joined me and provided a briefing on our research into the impact of climate change on alpine ecosystems, wind power siting, and efforts to get our hut guests involved in our work through the Mountain Watch program.
The huts really bring all aspects of our mission together – outdoor recreation, conservation, and education. I can’t wait to get back up in summer and spend time with our members and guests.
Photo: from left to right, Senior VP Walter Graff, Senior Interpretive Naturalist Nancy Ritger, John, Research Director Ken Kimball, VP of Resource Development Clare O’Connell. (Photo by Molly Ruffle)