(Durham, NH, September 28, 2020) - Whether as a cure for cabin fever or a safe way to spend time with friends, the COVID-19 pandemic has people viewing the outdoors with renewed interest. For Willem Lange, the well-travelled host of New Hampshire PBS’ WINDOWS TO THE WILD, that’s led to the realization that “if you’ve got to be under house arrest, northern New England is as nearly perfect a place as there could be.” With travel restrictions and social distancing in mind, Lange kicks off the 16th season of WINDOWS TO THE WILD close to home, visiting with Marianne Borowski, the founder of the Cross New Hampshire Adventure Trail, a local challenge that’s safe and fun for the whole family.
Borowski first thought of the 83 mile long Cross NH Adventure Trail while cycling a similar trail in Vermont. After contacting the group behind the cross Vermont trail, she learned that she was the first person to express an interest in continuing the project through New Hampshire. The Vermont group was thrilled to have her on board. “They were the ones to say ‘there’s nothing worse to see than a sign that says ‘trail ends’” Borowski remembers.
Borowski became an avid cross country cyclist in retirement, riding from Washington State to Gloucester, Massachusetts. That experience gave her a unique perspective on what makes a long distance trail user friendly. When charting the Adventure Trail she set herself a challenge. “Can I route something from border to border,” she wondered, “and make it as off-road as possible?” There are small stretches that include automobile traffic, but Borowski worked to make them quiet and the trail is largely auto mobile free.
Borowski may be a passionate cyclist, but all types of travelers are welcome, and welcome to travel as much or as little of the trail as they like. Lange notes that during filming, the crew met “sled dogs, horses, bicycles, and llamas. Federico Fellini would have loved it!”
Kate Slattery uses the Adventure Trail with Jill, her nine year old Quarter Horse. She appreciates the shared sense of community on the trail. “There’s a sense when you meet somebody on the trail that we’re all out enjoying the day,” she says. “It’s a nice, happy feeling to be on this trail.”
That feeling of connection and the joy in the outdoors are front and center throughout season 16 of WINDOWS TO THE WILD, as Lange visits with local authors, explores landmarks and hears the stories of the people we pass on the trail.
On the Adventure Trail, the crew met a hiker named Marsha Gray. “When my girls were little I dragged them out hiking, then when my grandchildren were born I dragged them out. Now they’re all grown and on their own, so I’m hiking alone,” says Gray, cheerfully. “I love being outdoors in nature. It keeps me young.” Whether you’re adventuring alone or with friends, WINDOWS TO THE WILD will return to provide inspiration on Wednesday October 7th at 7:30 p.m. on New Hampshire PBS or online anytime at nhpbs.org/windows.
About New Hampshire PBS: New Hampshire PBS inspires one million Granite Staters each month with engaging and trusted local and national programs and services on-air, online, via mobile, in classrooms and in communities. Beyond its award-winning television programs, New Hampshire PBS is a leader in education and community engagement. www.nhpbs.org
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