Appalachian Mountain Club Lodges: Huts or Palaces?

Franconia Notch, New Hampshire

If Greenleaf is a "hut," Niagara Falls is a fountain.

Sorry Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC), but your eight "huts" placed a day's hike apart from one another along 56-miles of the Appalachian Trail are not what you say they are. At all. Who are you trying to fool?

Sure, you call them huts, but that's like calling the Grand Canyon a "ditch" or labeling the Taj Mahal "a nice place but the pool isn't open for swimming."

Merriam-Webster defines a hut as a "small temporary dwelling." Have you ever seen one? Think: thatched roofs and mud floors. That's a hut. The tent I lived in for a summer in Alaska was a hut.

The magnificent retreats you offer to hikers are palaces compared to huts. OK. Maybe palace isn't the right word either. Most palaces have electricity; but, toilets, huge breakfasts and dinners, and evening entertainment sure beats camping with mice, snoring strangers, and fending off bears, raccoons and mosquitoes so large even bats are afraid of them.

Wait ... I'm beginning to understand. Could it be? Is this some type of reverse psychology?

That's got to be it! You only call them huts so that you won't have a bazillion people all wanting to rent them at once. You're actually saving mankind by alleviating riots in the woods!

Well played, AMC. Well played.

This 30% discount you're offering ... is it only available to folks who promise to keep the secret of how wonderful it is to hike into the middle of nowhere and find a friendly oasis with food, bunks, outrageous scenery and walls that don't flap in the wind?

Outsiders will think the huts were built back when George Eastman patented his first camera. They wouldn't dare say to their significant others, "Hey! I have an idea! Let's go into the wilderness, climb a mountain and sleep in a hut with people we meet in the woods!"

Yup, offering insiders who know the secret a 30% early season discount to celebrate the 125th anniversary of the huts is brilliant.

Don't worry, AMC. If too many people find out about the huts, you can always change the name to "hovels" to ward off newbies.

Dear Readers:

Reservations must be made by May 15, 2013. The 30% discount is available at any combination of AMC New Hampshire Huts or Lodges with a three-night stay from June 2-28, 2013, Sunday through Friday nights. You'll also get a free copy of Passport to AMC's High Huts in the White Mountains, a helpful planning guide that hut guests can get stamped at each hut to commemorate their anniversary visit.

All I ask is this: don't tell anyone you heard about AMC's huts from me. I do not want to be known as the person who spoiled the secret.


  • Phone: 603-466-2727 from 9 AM to 5 PM ET, Monday - Saturday
  • Online:
  • The promotional code HUTS125 must be mentioned when making a new reservation.

The AMC flag flying on Boston's Joy Street. ~~ Photograph by Robert Sutherland

Remember, you didn't hear about this from me.

Click Here for a Video Tour of AMC Huts

The Appalachian Mountain Club is America's oldest conservation and recreation organization.

AMC promotes the protection, enjoyment and understanding of the mountains, forests, waters and trails in the Appalachian region.

AMC huts in the White Mountain National Forest are operated under a special-use permit from the U.S. Forest Service.

Click Here for AMC's White Mountain Huts

Tags: Events, Tourism, Appalachian Trail, Hiking, Hiking Gear, Camping Gear, US Forest Service, Appalachian Trail Clubs, and Appalachian Mountain Club

About the Author Robert Sutherland:
Robert Sutherland is a travel writer enjoying life. Robert has two adult daughters and six grandchildren.
Related Articles

Published Mar 21, 2013.

The best trail mix is healthy, tasty and beneficial. So is this Appalachian Trail advice that will inspire you and empower you to thrive the Trail.

The Appalachian Mountain Club's Pinkham Notch Visitor Center provides life-saving weather and trail data to Mt. Washington hikers.