On Saturday, November 7, at 5:30pm, the Berkshire Chapter of the Appalachian Mountain Club will hold it’s annual dinner meeting at the Summit View House in Holyoke.
We are excited to announce that the speaker will be Tom Wessels, ecologist, educator and author. His books include: Reading the Forested Landscape, The Granite Landscape, Untamed Vermont, The Myth of Progress: Toward a Sustainable Future, and Forest Forensics: A Field Guide to reading the Forested Landscape. His focus will be on Reading the Forested Landscape. His books will be available for purchase and signing.
published by sprather on Mon, 06/22/2015 - 10:04pm
Warner Pond, just a few yards off Route 47 and bordered by Warner Hill and North Hadley farmlands, was a relaxing two-plus hour paddle last Saturday under a sun and puffy cloud blue sky. Swans with their cygnets, painted turtles, and a maze of blossoming Pond and Swamp Dock Lilies greeted us as we slowly meandered past a shoreline teaming with the signs and sounds of plant and animal life.
published by sprather on Wed, 06/18/2014 - 12:23pm
AMC is partnering with the Connecticut River Watershed Council for their Annual River Celebration on Saturday, June 21 at Gillette Castle State Park in CT. This year they are celebrating the expansion of the CT River Paddlers’ Trail, a major initiative that the AMC has been hard working on.
published by rbergstrom on Thu, 06/05/2014 - 9:20am
Join your neighbors around New England who are taking action to soak up the rain. They're planting trees, rain gardens and green roofs; disconnecting and redirecting their downspouts; using rain barrels and drywells; and replacing their driveways and parking lots with permeable pavement. They're helping to soak up the rain and reduce the polluted runoff that flows to our streams, lakes, rivers and coastlines.
As you may know, the American Chestnut tree used to be a prolific provider of nourishment over the winter months, and the tree was found all over the Eastern seaboard. However, in 1904 a bark blight was introduced from Asia, which spread and destroyed almost all the trees. Now, once the tree grows enough to develop bark, the fungus girdles and topples it. The tree still lives with sprouts coming from around the trunk. For many years, dedicated organizations have been trying to breed blight-resistant trees.
There are always amazing things happening in the outdoors, and all of them leave stories. Tracking is fun way to learn: it puts the QUEST back into question and the SEARCH back into research. Engage all the senses: touching the tracks, listening to birds and other woodland residents, and examining markings left behind on trees. Come hike with us as we gain a deeper understanding of the forest in winter and discover who is out and about at Noble View. Snowshoes required.
We are fortunate in the Appalachian Mountain Club chapters to be able to apply for funds for Special Projects like trail work and conservation-oriented events. We recently received funds for a conservation workshop like this, foraging for wild edibles in the heart of the Hilltowns.
This summer, individuals from UMass, the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Nature Conservancy are collaborating on the Outsmart Invasive Species Project in an effort to stop the spread of non-native plants and insects that jeopardize the health of our environment. The Outsmart team, partnering with the Nature Conservancy's Don't Move Firewood program, will be visiting a number of music festivals, farmers' markets, and other events throughout the summer to conduct in-person training in invasive species identification.
Conservation leaders from the Appalachian Mountain Club Berkshire Chapter and Westfield Transition Towns are presenting the Work of 1000 Civic Engagement Program at the Westfield Athenaeum on Wednesday, March 27th at 6:30 PM.
This program, a 30-minute film complemented by a personal discussion with the film’s central figure, citizen activist Marion Stoddart - provides a gripping profile of an ordinary citizen who realized her power to make a difference. The film, The Work of 1000, shares Marion’s exhilarating story of her work to clean up the Nashua River, once one of the most polluted rivers in America.
Our communities are facing real challenges. Economic uncertainty, global climate change, and other critical social issues are literally right at our doorstep. And now, more than ever, we need stories of hope, grit, empowerment and change. We need an inspirational model that engages people to make a difference in the world.
In an effort to increase its air quality database and educate its members about air quality concerns, AMC launched its Visibility Volunteer (VizVol) program in 2003. The program, part of AMC's "citizen scientist" Mountain Watch program, is designed to collect ozone and haze data from the peaks that AMC members frequent. Participants record ozone levels using a simple, credit card-sized device, and document visibility using a digital camera. AMC researchers will combine these measurements with weather data to track air quality trends in the Appalachian region.