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Active Outdoors
Downhill Mountain Biking requires a bike built for that purpose and the skills best learned on easier terrain like this "green circle" run at Sunday River. (Tim Jones/ photo)

Active Outdoors: Sunday River sojourn

Saturday, October 3, 2015

My sweetheart Marilyn and I were at Sunday River near Bethel, Maine, this past weekend for what has become an autumn ritual for us. Bethel is one of the great outdoors towns in New England. The foliage viewing is as good around here as anywhere in New England, and a slopeside condo with a small kitchen is a deal at off-season rates. We keep going back to Bethel simply because there’s so much to do. Last year, for example, the foliage was near peak and the weather was perfect so we rode the shuttle service offered by Bethel Outdoor Adventure ( and paddled 10 miles …

Active Outdoors: Four nights camping without a tent in Quebec

Friday, September 18, 2015

My sweetheart Marilyn and I have just returned from a wonderful camping getaway to the Eastern Townships of Quebec. We went in early September, but this would be a perfect foliage-season getaway. With the help of the friendly (and English-speaking) folks at Eastern Townships Tourism (, 800-355-5755) we planned an easy, relaxed adventure …

Active Outdoors: How did your summer go?

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Back in late June, I warned you that summer was almost over and that you needed to get out right then and start doing all the stuff you wanted to do while it was warm. Otherwise, you ran a real risk of having the summer fly by without having done anything really fun …

Active Outdoors: Learn how to ride a (mountain) bike

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Most of us learned how to ride a bike without training wheels before we were 10. Amazingly, this skill is just like, well, riding a bike – once you learn how, you never really forget. If you take …

Active Outdoors: Quebec’s Eastern Townships offer perfect late summer vacationing

Saturday, August 8, 2015

My profound apologies to those folks who revel in the heat and humidity of a summer day and love basking in the sun, but hooray! Summer’s almost over! Autumn’s arriving, and I, for one, can’t wait. Autumn, with …

Active Outdoors: Learning to mountain bike and exploring a rail trail on a southern sojourn

Friday, July 24, 2015

It’s one of those facts of life that define New England. Visit any parking lot in northern New England where people ski or hike or paddle or ride bikes or do anything fun and active outdoors, and you’ll …

Active Outdoors: Three days on a bike in Vermont

Friday, July 10, 2015

Looking for a quick, easy, very fun three-day, two-night biking getaway this summer or fall? Well, I have a beauty for you. We did this trek last September, after kids had gone back to school and just before …

Active Outdoors: So much to do, so little summer to do it in

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Summer’s almost over. Get out and enjoy it! Yes, yes, I know summer officially started less than a week ago, but bear with me here. If you really think about it, you’ll see the logic of what I’m …

Active Outdoors: Going by the book

Saturday, June 13, 2015

It almost sounds quaint in this age of Apple Watches and Google Glasses that something as old-fashioned as a book may still be your best source if you are looking for outdoor fun around New England. Sure, there’s …

Active Outdoor: Plan your one-night vacations this summer

Saturday, May 16, 2015

The way the world is structured today, most of us are tied into busy work, family and social schedules. With home offices, tablet computers and full web capabilities on our smart phones, it’s getting harder and harder to …

Active Outdoors: Prime waterfall time

Friday, April 17, 2015

Snow is a double blessing for Active Outdoors enthusiasts. Think back to late January and February, when, much to the joy of skiers and snowshoers, one snowstorm followed another and the hills of New England were covered with …

Active Outdoors: Four ways to enjoy April

Friday, April 3, 2015

I know it’s tough, watching all that wonderful snow melt and seeing the magnificently memorable winter of 2014-15 come to a close much too soon, it seems. But once the sun starts climbing in the sky, spring becomes …

Active Outdoors: Enjoying winter while it lasts

Saturday, March 21, 2015

This column could also be titled: “Why I’ll still be writing about skiing in mid-April.” The winter of 2014-15 got a late start. Except for the Thanksgiving storm (which was really too early to count, since all the …

Active Outdoors: Great skiing! More ahead!

Friday, March 6, 2015

The main reason I ski in December, January and even early February is so my legs will be in shape for March and April. The best of New England skiing starts after Presidents’ Week and lasts until the …

Active Outdoors: For outdoors lovers, it could be the best winter ever

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Sure, we all feel sorry for the poor commuters in Boston and other coastal cities. Almost everyone wishes all that snow had fallen on the northern hills instead of the coast. But spring will come too soon and …