Noble View News & Events

Monthly Naturalist Series 2017

Hosted by Noble View Outdoor Center


Sarsaparilla? Hobblebush? Clintonia? Oh My!

Identifying Forest Plants for Hikers

                              Sunday, May 21, 1:30 - 3:30 PM

Leader:  Dr. Dave Lovejoy,  Professor of Botany, WSU

Love plants?  Would you like to know more about those trees, shrubs and herbaceous plants that surround you when you hike?  Then this is the program for you.  Join Dave, a member of the biology department at Westfield State University, for an engaging hike about forest plant communities.  Learn why certain plants grow where they do, how to identify certain species, and how plants and animals interact.  Field guides are not necessary, but if you have one you'd like to practice using, bring it along.

Dr. Lovejoy has been teaching courses such as Environmental Biology, Natural History in America, and Flora of Massachusetts at WSU since 1970. In 2008 he authored “Vascular Flora of Springfield, Massachusetts”, which documents all the plant species in the city and updates a previous similar publication dating back to 1924. Dave sits on the Board of Directors of the The Naturalists’ Club.

To pre-register and for further information contact Nancy Condon or 413-297-0778 and leave your phone #.  For directions and info on upcoming events visit our website,  or


    AMC Noble View Outdoor Center

635 S. Quarter Road, Russell, MA 01071


Be sure not to miss this upcoming event!

The 2017 AMC Women's Conservation Leadership Program


635 S Quarter Rd,Russell, MA 01071

AMC (Appalachian Mountain Club): Recreation, conservation, education are three principles of the AMC.

This program is designed to understand and respond to conservation needs on the Appalachian Trail (AT) while learning about leadership skills and behaviors drawing on insight, and revelations while enjoying the great outdoors on hiking trips at Noble View Outdoor Center in Russell, MA. We will hike to a spot on the AT and learn about invasive plants and assist in removing these. Some of these grow in our own backyards and it is good to know their impact. See link:

Our efforts will follow with activities at Noble View Outdoor Center in Russell, MA where we will explore leadership, conservation while taking a few hikes, practicing yoga and bonding with other women to form new friendships while expanding our support systems.

Each of us will explore through hands-on learning and exercises how we incorporate leadership in our daily lives and within group dynamics. Sometimes, obstacles get in the way, and like invasive species we need to understand how to manage these or remove them. Over a two day period, with an overnight at Noble View Outdoor Center's double cabin (with kitchen and beds, facilities and a view of the Pioneer Valley), we will gather together to discover and explore how nature and leadership are often closely aligned.

Our leaders are trained to lead hikes with wilderness trained as trail leaders with skills in safety and nature, as well as leadership.

Noble View Outdoor Center's 358.5 acres of rural solitude maintain the ambiance of the original 1800s New England farmstead. A quiet, pristine mountaintop location offers breathtaking views of the Pioneer Valley east to Mt. Wachusett.

Easily accessible from major highways, Noble View is a favorite destination for outdoor enthusiasts of all ages and abilities. Beautiful trails  wind through woodlands and abandoned farm fields, passing brooks, stone walls, cellar holes, and diverse habitats including an old growth hemlock stand. 

On-site and nearby attractions include hiking, swimming, biking, cross-country and downhill skiing, snowshoeing, canoeing, kayaking, backpacking, camping, fishing, and the many historic and cultural resources of Western Massachusetts.Noble View is an ideal site not just for outdoor activities


Women interested in the Appalachian Trail (AT) and work performed on it to protect the indigenous/rare species and who are interested in helping conservation efforts to remove invasive species on the AT.

Women who are interested in an opportunity to bond with other women who are like-minded

Women who are interested in exploring leadership styles and enhancing their own

Women who want a weekend to learn, hike and build new relationships

Women who want to explore the Berkshire AMC to learn more about the organization and enjoy one of our many programs.


Learn about an aspect of conservation. This includes indigenous and invasive species found on the AT that may well be also found in your own backyards. We will also learn how to remove invasive species working with various tools provided to us by the AMC Appalachian Trail Maintenance Leaders who will lead this segment of our weekend experiences.

Learn, share and discover from each other while offering a more intimate environment to build new relationships and receive more personalized attention. Given the size of this group will be limited to 20 or less, the opportunity to bond with others and build new relationships will be fostered.

Apply tools to strengthen indigenous species is liken to applying tools to strengthen ourselves as women leaders striving to achieve their goals and potentials while removing invasive species (tools provided)

Experiment through exercises through hiking/walking to illustrate how we lead and how these define us, or not, help us or not, in leading along with the balance of leadership and group dynamics. These will be facilitated with leaders trained in conservation, leadership training, and safety which will be shared during these exercises, before and after.

Build teambuilding skills reflected in responding to invasive species and throughout the program in exercises and communications that also incorporate learning how manage daily challenges while building new relationships.

Discover insights with respect to our own leadership styles and approaches and what is working for us and not, as we learn from each other.

Our agenda includes:

June 10

9am- 3pm - Conservation Hike on the Appalachian Trail and invasive species removal with Steve Smith, and

Deena Gilbert (we meet at Tyringham Cobbles, Tyringham, MA)

3pm - 5pm - Clean UP/Unpack take showers and relax (everyone)

5pm - 8pm - BBQ dinner and chat about conservation and leadership discussion/presentation about

the relationship between conservation and leadership (removing invasive species/obstacles)

8pm to 10pm - Night Hike: an experiential exercise in listening and learning/leadership with Fred Evans, Bess

Dillman and Deena Gilbert

June 11

7am-9am - Breakfast (GroupDynamic/Leadership exercise - Everyone)

9am-10am - Cleanup kitchen…chat/relax (everyone)

10am-11am - Yoga Outside (mats, towels)

11-noon - Showers / relax/ socialize and rest)

noon to 1 - Kristen Sykes, Director AMC Conservation; Presentation on Conservation &

Lunch and round table discussions (pizza or subs)

1:30pm to 3pm - Experiential Day hike with Laura Stinnett & Deena Gilbert (experiential leadership)

3pm - Collective discussion, pack, clean up and clear out


a. Please advise if you have special dietary or other needs.

b. Accompanying you to Noble View you will need to bring (sleeping bag or sheets (twin), pillow & case; for hiking and outdoors - yoga matt (or towel) if you have one, or let us know if you need one, bug spray, hiking shoes, long pants and long shirt sleeves, sunglasses, sunblock, flashlight/headlamp, novelties for shower/grooming).

c. Please share with organizer and leaders if you need any further accomodations based on physical or heath related needs.

d. This event is subject to cancellation by May 10th if participation falls below minimum required costs for the event. In such a case, full refund will be returned to participants. If the event remains scheduled, any cancellations by participants will receive a 50% refund up and until May 10, 2017. After May 10, 2017, no refund will be provided.

Any questions please contact Deena Gilbert, 413-881-4009/203-898-3131 or




 Hosted by Noble View Outdoor Center

Experience how the outer vista can foster your inner journey. Let the beauty of nature increase the peace and well being that come from yoga.

Sunday, June 11, 10:00 - 11:30 AM
NVOC, Russell, MA 

Spending time in nature is a great way to counteract stress and yoga is a wonderful activity for relaxing the body and calming the mind. Come and experience the gentle movements and soothing breathing exercises of yoga in a lovely meadow, surrounded by beautiful trees, with amazing views of the surrounding area. 

Yoga on the Mountain is led by Sally Barber of the Westfield Yoga Center.​ In her twenty plus years of sharing yoga with others, she has never taught in an environment as grand as Noble View. Participants of all levels and abilities, including total novices, and school age children are welcome to attend. Wear comfortable clothing and bring a blanket and/or a sitting pad to cover the ground.  Bring snacks & enjoy the 50 mile view at Noble View! Rain cancels. 

FREE,​ but DONATIONS accepted. Registration required. Call Laura Stinnette at 413-454-3232 and leave your phone number or email: For directions and info on upcoming events visit,

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 AMC Noble View Outdoor Center 

635 S. Quarter Road, Russell, MA 01071


Journaling at the Edge

Hosted by Noble View Outdoor Center 

A nature journal is a tool to focus our attention. 

The journal helps connect us to our curiosity, presence, and joy.

Saturday, June 17, 10:00-11:30 AM 

AMC NVOC, 635 S. Quarter Road, Russell, MA 01071 

Join us for an introduction to the art of nature journaling. All skill levels are welcome. We will start on the porch and then wander out on the trails. Guidance will be simple: Slow down. Search for something that brings you delight. Use your pencil, pen, or camera to find your way closer towards what brings you joy. 

Bring your choice of portable sketching supplies (paper, pencils or pens), sturdy footwear, snacks and water. Bring a bag lunch if you want to extend your time at the site. There is much to observe and experience among the old hemlocks, rocky ledges, wide fields and flowing waters of Noble View. Co-led by AMC Berkshire Chapter volunteer Tammis Coffin & friends. Rain cancels.

FREE, but DONATIONS to Noble View accepted. Registration required. Call Laura Stinnette at 413-454-3232 and leave your phone number or email: For directions and info on upcoming events visit 

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Noble View Volunteer Opportunities

Noble View Outdoor Center’s Committee is currently seeking new members and general volunteers. As Noble View has become popular, more volunteers are needed to keep up! Noble View is entering a new phase within the Club – to be a major AMC Outdoor Facility between the Whites & Delaware Water Gap. We welcome you to be part of this endeavor and TO VOLUNTEER. Specific needs are: 

Marketing Chair 
• Responsible for outreach including the Web Site and FaceBook as well as to provide stimulus in filling lodging and programs 

Trail Volunteers 

Training available, 
6-8 hrs once or twice a month - mid April thru end of Nov

For further information please contact: Frank Evans 413-210-8119 

The Noble View lodging calendar (Make a reservation) page is now up to date


Noble View Hosts 2015 Warrior Hike Participants!

On July 21st, Noble View had the honor of hosting nine hikers who are participating in the Warrior Hike "Walk off the War" program along the Appalachian Trail. This is the second year Noble View has given a night's respite to veterans hiking the trail, and we intend to carry on this tradition of giving the hikers a bit of "luxury" including hot showers, local fresh food, a night's rest under a roof, and a hearty breakfast and ride back to the trail the next morning. 

Dennis, Olaf, Caitlin, David, Nate, the other Nate, Gabe, Joel, and Michelle come from all over the country, served in various branches of the military, and have diverse reasons for hiking the AT. Dennis Newton, a retired chaplain, has always wanted to hike the AT and only now has the time; Olaf McCreary has a bad case of wanderlust, is coping with myriad transitions in his life, and is enjoying life with his best friend Arrow*; Caitlin Murphy is seeking the next chapter in her young life and intends to pursue psychology and wants to work with female vets as a counselor in what she notes is a much-needed niche in providing care for female veterans; and Joel Strait is seeking to shrug off his cynicism about humanity, noting that he's almost in disbelief at the number of people wanting to help the Warrior Hikers without looking for anything in return--the so-called Trail Angels many of the hikers told me about and who are abundant along the AT. Some of the hikers just quietly enjoyed their stay with us, hopefully enjoying the peace and quietude found in abundance at Noble View. 

We hope that Joel continues to be heartened by the selfless acts of kindness, including those most recently offered by Noble View volunteers; the VFW in Russell, MA; the local Big Y in Westfield, MA; the Westfield Evening News; and a few anonymous donors of items used to pamper these hikers who have given so much for our country. All individuals are remaining nameless because we couldn't even possibly name all the Trail Angels who made it possible for Noble View to host these hikers, plus, we it would just irritate Joel if we tried! 

*Arrow, an abandoned service dog left wandering in Qatar, adopted Olaf as his human. According to Olaf, Arrow has been stealing the hearts of all who meet him--so much so that people who have been following their hike anticipate Arrow's arrival along key points on the trail, and are anxious to meet and assist Arrow who is facing some health challenges.



Emerald Ash Borer - killing Noble View Ash trees

The Emerald Ash Borer has been identified at Noble View. This Invasive is attacking and killing our Ash trees. Identification of trees that have been attacked is to view the top of the tree; if the top third is dead you have spotted Emerald Ash Borer damage. It is only a matter of time before the whole tree is dead. 

The Emerald Ash Borer is divesting the forests of Massachusetts, New England states, and across much of the Eastern United States

Scientific Name: Agrilus planipennis 
Common Name: Emerald Ash Borer
Known Hosts: 
White ash (Fraxinus americana), black ash (F.nigra), red ash (F. pennslyvanica), green ash (F. pennsylvanica var. subintegerrima) and several horticultural varieties of ash. 

Key ID Features (Adults, Larvae): 
• The body is a golden green or brassy color overall with darker, metallic emerald green wing covers. 
• Adults measure ½” 8.5-13mm) in length. Females are larger than males. 
• Adults are present from mid-May to late July and feed on leaves leaving irregularly- shaped patches with jagged edges. 
• Larvae are flattened in appearance, consisting of 10 cream-colored, bell-shaped segments with a pair of brown pinchers at one end. 
• Larvae about 1-1 ¼” (26- 32mm) in length when fully developed. 

Description of damage: 
• Distinct S-shaped tunnels are formed beneath the bark from larval feeding. 
• Vertical splits in the bark are caused by callus tissue forming in response to larval feeding. 
• Adult emergence leaves D- shaped exit holes (3-4 mm in diameter) in bark. 
• The upper third of the tree dies back. 
• Numerous shoots arise below the dead portion of the trunk


Updated Trail System & Maps

In 2013 AMC Trail staff walked and reviewed Noble View’s trails and developed a comprehensive plan, including the elimination of redundant loops and trails near major trails.  As a result of their work, the trail system has been completely reworked to eliminate the confusing maze of trails that have developed over the years.

This summer AMC brought "Greenagers” (teenagers) to Noble View for 6 weeks of trail work focusing on placing the trail plan into action.  Junction signs were installed, wet areas bridged, and discontinued trails eliminated.

A new trail system and map will eliminate any confusion during your visit. Please be sure you carry a map and compass with you. Hike Safe.                                                                    AMC "Greenagers" Trail Crew - Reviewing Safety Day 1       

NEW Food Option

Noble View can now provide the evening meal at an additional cost. Many entrees and sides are available depending upon party size and choices - please inquire .

Monthly Naturalist Programs

Noble View Outdoor Center kicked off its ongoing Monthly Naturalist Programs in 2012 with “Exploring the Natural World Around Us,” led by John Green Jr., a renowned Connecticut River Valley naturalist and photographer. Since then, we've hosted naturalist programs each month, including birding, plant and wildflower identification, and family programs for parents and kids.

For further information and directions contact Frank Evans, 413-572-4501, or by email: .

Noble View's A Mountain Classroom Program for Schools

A Mountain Classroom offers an integrated learning experience that merges environmental education, personal development and team building seamlessly in a hiking-based program that challenges students and inspires an appreciation for the natural world.

For more information or to schedule a program, contact: Andrea Muller at 603-466-2721 x8132, or by email: program details, see the Education page.

Noble View Generating Electricity

We're spinning the meter backward at Noble View Outdoor Center!

The photovoltaic array on the bath house went online on February 5, 2010, and immediately began to generate electricity. The electricity that isn’t used at Noble View flows back into the grid. 

Monitoring at the link below began on 3/5/10. Under Energy Performance, there’s a bar graph showing the amount of electricity generated per day, and under Equivalents you can get a better idea of the amount of power we’ve generated on an ongoing basis.

© Copyright 2014 All Rights Reserved. The Appalachian Mountain Club • Noble View Outdoor Center • 635 South Quarter Road, Russell, Massachusetts 01071 :: Updated 6.10.16