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By Peter Kim, NOLS Alumni Intern

NOLS Alumni Chapters have witnessed a revival this past summer. All of our alumni chapters had higher levels of participation after a period when many chapters had changes in leadership and lulls in activity. Here are highlights from the chapters in Boston, New York and Colorado’s Front Range.

NOLS Boston
The Boston chapter started the year with new leaders Brian Kruegel and Janet Bertucci and continued to have strong summer programming. The monthly Summer Day Hike Series continued with Mt. Chocorua in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, and the Skyline Trail in Blue Hills Reservation near Boston. Other trips included a hike to Mt. Lafayette in the White Mountains in September, and the Seven Sisters Trail near Northampton, Mass. in October. Rounding out the outdoor events were a monthly Walden Pond swim and paddle, and a rafting trip, run with the New York Chapter, on the Dead River in Maine.

Events for fall and winter include the annual fall reunion, a trail maintenance and whisperlite potluck, more day hikes, a cabin overnight in the Whites, and ice climbing. The chapter’s urban events include a Beer and Bowl Night at Lanes and Games, which started in September, and will continue through the fall and winter.

NOLS New York
The NYC chapter was in full swing this summer. Highlights included sunset kayaking on the Hudson, rock climbing in New Jersey, and whitewater rafting in Maine. Drew Pollick hosted some challenging and fun-filled weekends of climbing at Rick’s Rocks and assorted adventures at the cabin also known as “NOLS NJ”.

Grads got together in early June at Patagonia upper West side to see “Mountain of Storms,” a movie chronicling Yvon Chouinard’s 1968 trip to Patagonia, and a slide presentation by Kristine Tompkins about the efforts of the Patagonia Land Trust. Later that month, 25 NOLS grads and friends enjoyed a long lingering sunset paddle on the beautiful and somehow serene Hudson River. Last but not least was the NYC and Boston joint-chapter rafting trip! The chapter will meet in early November to plan winter events.

NOLS Colorado Front Range
The Colorado Front Range chapter started the season with a Solstice weekend trip to Buena Vista, where they rafted the Arkansas River, hiked Mount Yale, and camped in an idyllic spot outside town. Read McColloch, a former NOLS Instructor, organized the rafting trip as a benefit for cityWILD. Helen Gemmill, chapter chair, reports, “The hike up Mount Yale, led by former NOLS instructor Rob Leach, was gorgeous—it was such a clear day that we were able to linger on the summit for over an hour.”

The Happy Hour series will continue into fall and winter. Future events include the annual winter slide show at the Patagonia store in Denver, a ski day, and a cook-off in the spring.

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