The Challenge: Spend Time Outdoors by Taking a 30minute Walk


Engaging in outdoor activities, particularly walking, has been extensively linked to various mental health benefits. Spending time in natural environments, including parks and green spaces, is associated with reduced stress and improved mood. The role of nature in enhancing self-esteem, mood, and overall psychological well-being has been shown in many studies. Walking in nature can provide even more health benefits, not only physical. Regular walks in green spaces has been associated with reduced activity in brain regions linked to mental health disorders.*




Commit to spending a half an hour each day going for a walk. Set a time in your schedule, either after dinner or in the morning, whatever works best for you and doesn’t add stress to your day. Planning a route might work best for you, or perhaps you prefer to wander and see where the walk takes you. Either way, the goal is to get to get outside and clear your mind.

Looking for more ways to connect with nature?

The Hudson Valley is rich in outdoor experiences, which makes it a great place to live, work and play. Drawing on more than 50 years protecting and preserving this region, Scenic Hudson has created a directory of some of the unique treasures to be found here.




Want to explore some of the best outdoor walking destinations in the county?

The Ulster County Nature Bus is your FREE Ticket to Explore Ulster County’s Natural Wonders!

The Ulster County Nature Bus is a new program kicking off on Saturday, April 27, for community members to visit and explore the County’s natural treasures and destination favorites like Sam’s Point, Ashokan Rail Trail, Walkway Over the Hudson, Minnewaska, and the Catskills Visitor Center, to name a few. The program is entirely free for both transportation and admission to the sites, and all Nature Bus routes include destinations for people of all ages and abilities. The Nature Bus will run on Saturdays through mid-October.

More Info & Full Schedule

*Barton, J., & Pretty, J. (2010). What is the best dose of nature and green exercise for improving mental health? A multi-study analysis. Environmental Science & Technology, 44(10), 3947-3955.

*Thompson Coon, J., Boddy, K., Stein, K., Whear, R., Barton, J., & Depledge, M. H. (2011). Does participating in physical activity in outdoor natural environments have a greater effect on physical and mental well-being than physical activity indoors? A systematic review. Environmental Science & Technology, 45(5), 1761-1772.

*Bratman, G. N., Hamilton, J. P., Hahn, K. S., Daily, G. C., & Gross, J. J. (2015). Nature experience reduces rumination and subgenual prefrontal cortex activation. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 112(28), 8567-8572.