For May is Membership Month, I asked some of ADK’s young members about why they joined and what they love about ADK. Here’s what Josh Baker of the Albany Chapter had to say:

Why did you join ADK?

I originally joined ADK in 2014 because I had just started hiking the Adirondack High Peaks and needed people to hike with.

Why do you continue to support ADK?

I feel that it is important to support the areas and trails that I love and that I use.

What is your favorite part about being an ADK member? 

My favorite part of being a member is meeting new people that I share a common passion with. The different stories shared during hikes about the experiences that others have had on the trail are great.  Also, so many of ADK’s leaders have so much experience and can teach you a lot.

What’s the benefit of belonging to an ADK chapter?

With joining a chapter, you have the option to go to monthly meetings and meet people in the chapter. The Albany chapter’s education sessions during monthly meetings are always great.  Also, being in a chapter, you are more likely to increase your involvement with the organization.

How has being an ADK member impacted you?

ADK has made me a more knowledgeable and responsible hiker and has made me more aware of the challenges facing the Adirondacks and other lands in NY, as well as how to be an advocate for those lands.

How do you volunteer for ADK and what do you enjoy about it?

I volunteer for the Albany chapter as an outings leader and as the Young Members Chair. I enjoy bringing others to the areas that I enjoy and getting people outdoors. It’s great when you take people that have never done a High Peak or any mountain and see their sense of accomplishment when you get to the top with them.  I like getting people hooked on hiking and showing them what we are fighting to conserve and why it is important to protect the land for future generations.