AMC Western MA Chapter

Founded in 1929, the Western Massachusetts (Western MA) Chapter carries out the Appalachian Mountain Club's (AMC) mission in the geographic region defined by the four counties that comprise western Massachusetts, namely: Berkshire, Franklin, Hampshire, and Hampden.

AMC is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization dedicated to fostering the protection, enjoyment, and understanding of the outdoors. Since 1876 we’ve made it our mission to protect the mountains, forests, waters, and trails you love in the Northeast and mid-Atlantic regions.

Until late 2020, the Western MA Chapter was called the Berkshire Chapter. In Summer 2020, the chapter's Executive Committee began reaching out to our community to explore a new name for the chapter. Chapter leaders were concerned that the name "Berkshire Chapter" did not fully welcome and include all members of the many communities served by the chapter. As noted above, the chapter serves Franklin, Hampden, and Hampshire counties, as well as Berkshire. It also turns out that at least three quarters of the chapter's volunteer-led activities happen in the three counties comprising the Connecticut River Valley. We collected lots of data, both formally through a member survey and informally through conversations with trip leaders and participants. The overwhelming majority supported changing the chapter name to the Western Massachusetts chapter. This name change was approved by AMC's Board of Directors in November 2020.


Our website and its navigation are organized around AMC's mission to protect, enjoy, and understand the outdoors (see the top navigation items for protection, recreation (enjoyment), and engagement (understanding). Level 2 pages – accessed via navigation dropdowns – show what our chapter does to support AMC's mission and the experiences and resources we offer to the communities of western Massachusetts. We also use color to tie things together: gold is protection, green is recreation, and pink is engagement.


The Western MA Chapter is organized into committees, including 11 that plan activities. Each committee operates semi-independently with oversight from the Chapter's Executive Committee. Click or tap on the images in the slider to learn more about each one. Hover over any image to pause the slider.

Appie of the Year Award

The Appie of the Year award is presented every November at the Western MA annual meeting. The award recognizes outstanding sustained commitment in service and leadership.

Year Awardee
2023 Peggy McLennan
2022 Brant Cheikes
2021 Heather Wyman
2020 Roger Beer
2019 Jan Alicia Nettler
2018 Bess Dillman
2017 Mike Zlogar
2016 Cosmo Catalano
2015 Jon Hanauer
2014 Edwin Daniels
2013 Not Recorded
2012 Jim Pelletier
2011 Pat Fletcher
2010 Not Recorded
2009 Christine Fogarty
2008 Rob Robertson
Map of Western MA's region (pink).
Peggy McLennan
Appie of the Year, 2023: Peggy McLennan.
Back to top