the great hut to hut.

the great hut to hut

At the very end of August, when the days were still hot and blissfully free, Zan and I, and almost his entire family went on the most amazing 3 day adventure in the White Mountains in New Hampshire. We hiked during the day and spent the afternoons and evenings in a few of the Appalachian Mountain Club Huts, which run along the parts of both the Presidential Traverse and the Appalachian Trail. The entire experience was completely amazing and something that I feel so lucky to have gotten to do! We packed all our snacks and lunches ahead of time, kept our backpacks full of the essentials, and breathed in the most incredible views you can imagine.

Do you know what it feels like to be five thousand and twelve feet above sea level?

I T   F E E L S   G L O R I O U S.

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The first night we stayed at the Mitzpah Spring Hut. All of the AMC huts have one main dining room {pictured here} and then bunk rooms or cabins. It had been raining on our way up to the hut so upon arriving I was both excited and relieved. It felt so cozy and with so much of Zan’s family there hiking the trails and being together– like something special was going down in the history books. And I was glad to be a part of it.

the great hut to hut

Black Bean Soup! Foccacia Bread! Alpine Salad! Chicken Parm!

{These hut crew members did NOT mess around with dinner.}

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The gang’s all here.

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Our bunk room!

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Mapping out plans…

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And the weather was perfect. Early morning blue skies and a just a little bit cold, which turned to warm, of course, the minute our feet hit the trails. We ate oatmeal and pancakes and bacon for breakfast {another hut meal!} before gathering up our belongings to head out for our second day in the high mountains– 6 miles across the ridge to the Lakes of the Clouds…

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All 17 of us!

{And Zan’s sister and her boyfriend were joining in later that day. That’s 19! Party!}

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There she is! The Lakes of the Clouds Hut!

{And not a moment too soon.}

Also, Mount Washington straight ahead! Which I did not choose to climb, but much of our group {including Zan} did!

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Relaxing in the hut was more my speed at that point of the day… :)

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There really are lakes in the clouds, in case you were wondering!

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And they are stunning.

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As is the view from the hut!

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Hiking is hard, but it’s also incredibly fantastic. I would not say the actual act of hiking is “a walk in the woods” for me, but everything I feel at the end of the day is worth all the hard miles and steep hills and sore knees. It feels so free to be on top of the world like this looking out at all the layers, feeling like you just accomplished something big. And my favorite part was always the hot chocolate waiting for me in the hut, and when I was finally able to climb into my jams and sit down with my people, and enjoy a good meal AND a sweet sunset, all after a summer day’s work.


  1. Wow! The views, the family, the good food! A good day doesn’t need anything else. Such an amazing adventure. Makes me ache for the mountains in Utah again. Glad you made it to the top, sore knees and all. It’s always worth it in the end!

  2. this looks incredible! i’m inspired to figure out a hut trip here in CO- or, you know, fly to new england because your mountains are a much more favorable elevation than ours!

  3. Did you follow a set path? I’d love to do something similar this fall and wondering if there is a resource to help me plan it out!

  4. OMG! This sounds incredible! I may have to add this to our must-do US travel list! Great photos as always.


  5. Beautiful! I would love to do this someday

  6. So fun, and you did a wonderful job capturing it all! Love!

  7. this looks like the perfect summer adventure! I agree with you about the hiking part not being so fun, but oh to be on top of a mountain… totally worth it :)

  8. pffft, five thousand feet ain’t nothin’ ;)

    (I was having a random conversation with a classmate the other day about elevation – somehow related to oxygen saturation, I think? – and when I mentioned that I was living at 7000-8000 feet in Colorado, his jaw seriously dropped. Mobile elevation, on the other hand? <10. The geography of this country is crazy.)

    • haha! I was thinking that when I typed that in…. I was thinking, dang, Denver is higher than that on land! BUT, then again, Denver is GLORIOUS! So I guess my phrasing works. :)

      • Denver is SO GLORIOUS – but so is pretty much all of Colorado (in my entirely biased opinion). but I agree, there’s something magical about higher elevations. you don’t think about it as you’re actually living there, but when you leave you notice the difference.

  9. This is amazing! Totally my kind of adventure. I am so putting this one on the bucket list/go-as-soon-as-possible. Amazing!

  10. Dude, this looks amazing. I want to go there really badly now. And it’s in this area! Well, basically.

    I also want black bean soup now.

  11. My family does a 3-day hike every year and living in DC means I’ve missed the past few, so these pictures made me so nostalgic! It’s truly indescribable, but your pictures do an amazing job of capturing it.

    Lakes has always been my favorite hut. I know it’s sort of the most touristy, but sitting in that dining room, watching the clouds roll in and surround you is one of the most magical things I’ve ever experienced.

    So glad you enjoyed your trip!

  12. What an INCREDIBLE journey! I’m not much of a camper, but your photos are so gorgeous I could even see myself enjoying that hike. A soft(-ish) bed and tasty meal at the end makes it pretty enticing too!

  13. such a cutie1 CONGRATS on this awesome acheivement.

  14. I spent an entire week in northern Italy doing just this. Hiking all day, relaxing at the hotel in the evening. It was amazing. The physical exhaustion accumulated by day would disappear after half an hour in the indoor swimming pool, and by next morning we would do it all over again. Who would ever guess that hiking vacations would be so awesome! I’m ready to do it again next year!

  15. These pictures are glorious. They remind me of summer camp and sunshine and laughter for no reason. (I feel the same way about hiking and hot chocolate.)

  16. What an amazing trip! They have huts like that along the Appalachian Mtns and I have always thought that would be neat to hike from one to another. So cool that so many family members joined! Those views are stunning!

    • Thank you for this beautiful overview of this exciting and heartwarming event! For me, it was the beauty of experiencing family and nature as a pure connection absent the chaos of the outside world. I am ready to do it all over again! xo


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