Lake of the Clouds HutMK Nature Design would like to introduce you to her most favorite place in the world…the White Mountains of New Hampshire.  There you can hike the Appalachian Trail and meet the Appalachian Mountain Club.

The White Mountains of New Hampshire has a hut system that reaches across  80 km of trail.  It consists of two ridges which can be hiked.  Across these ridges are huts about a days hiking distance apart but there are also tenting sites that can be used.  The terrain is rugged and to train I climbed stairs because the huge rocks are like stairs.  But you can hike over one ridge of mountains, come back down and then hike over another ridge of mountains.  This took me ten days a long time ago, and I was a slow hiker.  I used the hut system and tented one night.

The huts are run by the Appalachian Mountain Club.  To use a hut you have to book in advance.  You can check the availability of huts with this link.  But you have to know which hut you are going to.  Or you can call 603-466-2727 from 9am to 5pm Monday to Saturday or email lodging@outdoors.org.  The hut provides supper and breakfast and a bunk that is in a room shared by many people.  A map of the huts and shuttle service can be found here.

The Appalachian Mountain Club has chapters from Maine to Washington, DC.  It was founded in 1876.  It’s mission is to “promote the protection, enjoyment, and understanding of the mountains, forests, waters, and trails of America’s Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions.” (AMC website).

When I hiked the Whites I was at a crossroads in my life.  I was also very tired.  I needed a break.  I went to the Whites a very green hiker, with a 50 lb pack on my back.  I took a bus to get there.  What I found in the Whites was peace.  I hiked, sweated, cursed at false summits and slept the sleep of the innocent.  Deep and exhausted sleep.  The Whites have a magic to them.  This magic touched my soul, soothed it and healed it.  I came out rejuvenated and yes, a different person.  Stronger, more confident and at peace.

My work in progress painting is the view off the top of Mount Washington, looking down on Lake of the Clouds Hut.  It is a pastel painting on U-Art paper.  I started this painting on my birthday…wanting to do something for myself.  It will hang in my studio and I will look at it every day.  The beauty of the Whites cannot be matched by anything else I believe.  The smooth horizon has a gentleness that touches the soul.  This is a work in progress (WIP).

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