In the field with Jerry Monkman
newest national park.
New book set to be
released on June 9th.
A day of adventure in New
Hampshire’s winter playground.
My latest conservation photo
projects in New England.
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Spring is doing its best to get started up here in northern New England, and I’m excited
to get moving on some new projects for 2017, which include photographing several land
protection projects, revising my fall foliage guide book, and starting work on a new
feature-length documentary film set in New Hampshire and northern Massachusetts.
But like the snow still clinging to the high country, much of this issue of Places has
a wintry feel while featuring what I shot this past winter and during the last several
months of 2016.
I may be a little slow to join in on fads, but I recently added a drone to my collection of
gear. I’m still getting used to shooting remotely – it’s a different feeling than shooting
while sitting in an airplane or helicopter – but it should be an ideal tool for many of
my conservation photo projects. You can see some old-school aerials that I shot from
a Cessna late last summer for The Conservation Fund in the story starting on page 18.
Perhaps the biggest conservation story in New England from the last six months was
President Obama’s designation of the new Katahdin Woods and Waters National
Monument in northern Maine. I was excited to explore a portion of the park on skis in
February as some friends and I took advantage of one of the park’s (free!) backcountry
cabins. Photos from this visit and others I’ve made to the park are on pages 4 – 9.
The rest of Places takes you on winter adventures, to Acadia National Park, and to some
colorful fall landscapes – enjoy!
Table of Contents
KATAHDIN WOODS AND WATERS.........................................................................4-9
Exploring Maine’s newest national park.
WHITE MOUNTAINS WINTER ADVENTURE....................................................... 10-15
A day of adventure in New Hampshire’s winter playground.
AMC’S OUTDOOR ADVENTURES: ACADIA NATIONAL PARK............................ 16-17
New book set to be released on June 9th.
LAND CONSERVATION PROJECTS...................................................................... 18-23
My latest conservation photo projects in New England.
On the Cover: The Percy Peaks in New Hampshire’s Nash Stream State Forest.
Inside cover: My White Mountains winter adventure photo shoot featured winter camping and more - page 10
(alternate) On the cover: The Percy Peaks in New Hampshire’s Nash Stream State Forest.
P.O. Box 424, Portsmouth, New Hampshire 03802
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Exploring Maine’s Newest National Park
Last August, President Obama signed an
executive order creating Katahdin Woods
and Waters National Monument in
northern Maine. Nearly 90,000 acres in
size, the land making up the new park was
donated to the feds by Roxanne Quimby,
who has been acquiring land in the area
for much of the last twenty years. The
woods are thick here, providing habitat
for most of Maine’s well-known wildlife
– moose, bobcat, Canada Lynx, black bear,
brook trout and more.
I first explored the area that would
become the national monument more
than 4 years ago, while shooting a story
about the International Appalachian
Trail for Down East Magazine. During
my three days of hiking and driving on
old woods roads, I never encountered
another human, but I could see the
recreation potential in the property’s
woods, bald mountaintops, and its
several miles of frontage on the wild East
Branch of the Penobscot River. As soon as
the park was created, I began looking for
some time where I could sneak back up
there and shoot.
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Above left: Morning light and fog on Mount
Katahdin as seen from the Park Loop Road.
Above right: Jerry on the International
Appalachian Trail in 2012 in what is now part
of the new national monument.
Bottom right: The wild and remote East
Branch of the Penobscot River.
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Haskell Hut is one of two backcountry cabins in Katahdin
Woods and Waters National Monument.
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Another project brought me near the
park in October and I was able to steal
a morning on the new park loop road,
and that was just the tease I needed to
plan a ten-mile, two night cross-country
ski trip to the park in February. Being
a brand new park, there is very little
infrastructure, save for the old logging
roads, some of which were graded into
the 16-mile park loop road. As far as I
can tell, the superintendent is currently
the only park employee and there is no
visitor center yet. Thankfully, a group of
volunteers groom about 20 miles of ski
trails and maintain two old cabins in the
park that can be reserved on a first-come,
first-serve basis. There’s no charge to stay
in the cabins, yet they were super clean,
comfortable, and fully stocked with
firewood, a woodstove, and a propane
cooking stove. We saw the sun for a total
of about five minutes in our three days
in the park and we had to drive six hours
home in a blizzard, but it was a great trip!
Above left: Pulling a sled through fresh powder
between Haskell Hut and Bowlin Camps.
Below left: Skiers outside Haskell Hut.
Right: After sunset on the East Branch of the
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A day of
Living in northern New England can
mean surviving 4 – 5 months of snow and
cold. Thankfully, we have lots of ways to
enjoy the outdoors in winter, especially
in New Hampshire’s White Mountains.
Left: Fat tire biking in the snow at Great Glen
Trails in Gorham, NH.
Above right: Winter camping in the White
Below right: Snow covered roads are a
common sight in New Hampshire’s north
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Fat tire biking in the snow at Great Glen Trails in Gorham, NH.
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Top: A woman prepares her mountaineering
rope in the White Mountains.
Bottom Left: A couple enjoys a break from fat
Right: A woman running on a snowy day in
New Hampshire’s White Mountains.
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New book set to be released on June 9th.
It has been seven years since my wife Marcy and I last revised our adventure guide to
Acadia National Park, so it is exciting that the fourth edition of the book is finally slated
to be released this coming June 9th. Besides having newly updated trail descriptions
and a slew of new photos, the book also has a new name: AMC’s Outdoor Adventures:
Acadia National Park.
I made several trips to the park during the last year, most recently in October and
February. In October I was filmed for a segment about the park on a new PBS series,
Weekends with Yankee, which should begin airing this spring (look for me in episode
#9 “The Islands”.) It was a trip to be on the other side of the camera with Emmy award
winning host, Richard Wiese, as the PBS crew handled all the shooting.
The day after the PBS shoot, I photographed a sunrise hike with some hikers I met at a
local smoothie shop (Thrive on Rodick St. in Bar Harbor – you must check it out!) I’ve had
the idea for a photo of hikers at sunrise on “The Beehive” for a few years and it was great
to finally get it done!
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Above left: Winter morning at Boulder Beach.
Above right: Hikers watch the sunrise over the
Atlantic from ledges on The Beehive.
Bottom right: Hikers ascend iron ladders on
the cliffs of The Beehive.
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Photos from some of my most recent conservation
photo projects in New England.
Several of my conservation clients had
me shoot land protection projects last
year. The largest was a 32,000-acre
tract of working forest in northern
Maine that was recently acquired by The
Conservation Fund. This property must
be the flattest one of its size in the whole
state of Maine, so to get a big landscape
perspective, we decided I should shoot
some aerials. I opted for a 5:30 a.m. start
time to take advantage of early morning
light, and when I arrived at the lake near
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Millinocket, where the seaplane I hired
was docked, it was obvious I should let the
pilot drink his second cup of coffee before
take-off. (His grogginess included an
uncertainty about where we were flying
to, so I had to get my map out to suggest
a route for our flight.) He soon perked up,
mounted an iPad with a navigation app
on the plane’s controls, and we were off.
Thirty minutes later, we were over the
property just after sunrise, and we shot
most of the project over the course of
another half hour. It would have taken all
day with a drone to get the same amount
and quality of photos, so hiring a plane
was the right call in this case.
The other projects you see here were shot
for The Open Space Institute, the National
Fish and Wildlife Fund, and the Essex
County Greenbelt Association.
Above left: Pulling a canoe through low water
on the East Branch of the Penobscot River on a
property recently protected by the Open Space
Above right: Wytipitlock Stream from the air
above the working forest in Reed, Maine.
Bottom right: Dawn on the Mattawamkeag
River as it flows through the Reed Plantation in
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Exploring a tributary of the East Branch of the Penobscot River.
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Above right: Women paddlers on the Essex
River in Essex, Massachusetts.
Bottom right: Another aerial of Wytipitlock
Stream as it flows through bogs and forests
just after sunrise.
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P.O. Box 424
Portsmouth, New Hampshire 03802