serving the Hudson River Valley and Ulster, Greene, Sullivan, and Delaware Counties

Quadricentennial Challenge

Catskills Live!
a nonprofit association of trail users and organizations representing those who enjoy hiking, cycling, cross-country skiing, skateboarding, inline skating, horseback riding, birding, geocaching, painting, and other trails activities in the Hudson River Valley and the Catskill Mountains, including Marlborough, Lloyd, New Paltz, Gardiner, Ellenville, Rosendale, High Falls, Hurley, Kingston, Saugerties, Woodstock, Olive, Phoenicia, Shandaken, and Pine Hill

Ulster County Trails Advisory Committee
April 17, 2017, at 6:00 pm

The next meeting of the Ulster County Trails Advisory Committee is scheduled for Monday, April 17, 2017, at 6:00 pm in the Legislative Chambers, 6th Floor, County Office Building, 244 Fair Street, Kingston. The agenda includes updates on local and regional trail projects.

The public is welcome and members of the trails community are encouraged to attend!

Quadricentennial Challenge

In support of the celebration of the Hudson River Quadricentennial, Catskills Live! Trails & Wilderness Association established a Hudson River Valley Legacy Geocaching Trail and is encouraging its use by residents of and visitors to New York State and the Hudson River Valley. To generate curiosity and excitement about the Quadricentennial and attract people to investigate the Hudson Valley and its history, we have hidden Quadricentennial-themed geocaches at key public locations along the proposed Hudson Valley Legacy trail, which, when completed, will stretch along the Hudson River from New York City to Albany.

Through historical research and trail reconnaissance, we have identified a dozen geocache sites that accent important Quadricentennial events and illustrate the historic importance of this important reach of the Hudson River. Featured sites focus on hydrologic, geologic, cultural, and historic features that pre-dated, led to, and followed Henry Hudson's voyage up the Hudson River. Examples include the physical and geologic nature of the Hudson River channel that allowed Hudson's vessels to sail upriver, early fishing techniques used by Native Americans at the time that Hudson sailed, documentation of early contact between Hudson and Native Americans, topographic and landscape elements of interest and concern to boating along the Hudson, interpretation of significant tributaries to the Hudson along the Legacy Trail, discussion of animal life along the Hudson corridor some 13,000 years ago (e.g., giant beaver and mastodons), illustration of former glacial lakes that inundated the Legacy Trail, and development of early industries along the Hudson, such as the brick-making industry spawned by relict glacial lake clays.

The new geocaches, each containing at least one beautiful and finely crafted "travel bug" or "geocoin" bearing the Quadricentennial logo, will extend and enhance existing interpretive opportunities along the Hudson River. Geocachers who find the Quadricentennial Challenge geocoins along the proposed Legacy Trail can move them forward as they travel to and explore other caches in the Catskills and Hudson River Valley. Subsequent geocachers will then find the treasures and will in turn move them along to more distant sites. Our Legacy Trail Quadricentennial Challenge geocoins have already started traveling around the country, commemorating New York's Quadricentennial Celebration and the famous voyages of Henry Hudson and Samuel de Champlain.

The Quadricentennial Challenge thus combines interest in hiking and historic tourism with a new technology in the spirit of exploration embodied by Hudson and Champlain. Via the Quadricentennial Challenge treasures we release into the world, and the maps and educational information that we are creating to accompany them, we are inviting residents of and visitors to the Hudson Valley to explore their surroundings and to embark on voyages to "points unknown," following in the tradition of New York's first inhabitants and its adventurous first explorers.

As you probably know, geocaching is a rapidly growing outdoor activity, enjoyed by hundreds of thousands of people worldwide. Geocoins have been used successfully across the United States to celebrate important places and historic events. The Lincoln City Geocaching Challenge provides an excellent example. Within a few months of its release, the Lincoln City geocoin had already traveled across the country from Oregon to New York State. More locally, the 7 year old to 11 year old scouts from Shandaken Cub Scout Pack 60 and their leaders recently placed a series of eleven geocaches that they call their Shandaken Geocache Challenge series. These caches are distributed widely throughout Shandaken, contain well-researched information on local history, and have been well-received in the online geocaching community, demonstrating the educational value and enjoyment that can accompany exploring and sharing with others intriguing aspects of one's own community.

As our Quadricentennial Challenge geocoins journey throughout the United States and around the world, we will publish news stories about them and produce an online map showing places they have reached. These reports will provide a point of entry for those outside the geocaching community, so that everyone can join in the fun and participate in the exploration of the proposed Hudson Valley Legacy Trail, the Quadricentennial Challenge sites, and related parks, trails, and historic places.

We hope that participating in this project will generate enthusiasm for a deeper and more nuanced understanding of the heritage of New York State and the Hudson River Valley, with impacts that will extend far beyond the period of the Quadricentennial.

Please feel free to send us information about your organizations and to sign up to receive the occasional Catskills Live! electronic newsletter. Send your information to info |at| (please type in our email address to help us avoid spam from robotic email address harvesters).

For more information:
Kathy Nolan
(845) 688-9702
info |at|

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