Kestrel's Adventure Challenge:

Have fun, seek out wildness, and explore!

Click here to download a pdf of our newest Adventure Challenge Board.  Complete six out of eight challenges to win a prize. 

Need hints?  This page could help!  Or visit the Get Outside Center, 186 Main Street, Gloucester.

A) Find, photograph, and identify at least 2 species of salamander.

Try looking in clear ponds, flipping rocks in cool streams, and rolling logs and rocks in the woods. Make sure to roll them back!  Borrow a field guide from Kestrel if you need one.  Ravenswood Park in Gloucester is an especially great place for finding salamanders. 

B) Make a model boat out of only things you can find in nature, put it in a stream or a river, and sail it as far as you can.  Added fun - mark the start point and the end point on a map.

Try using tough grasses to hold your boat together. Use a long stick to free your boat from any hangups, such as downed branches or eddy currents. Ask a Kestrel instructor’s advice if you need help finding a good river for sailing model boats.  

C) Measure a huge tree by how many hugs around it is.

Find the largest tree you can, team up with family or friends, and wrap around that tree! (watch out for poison ivy though!)

D) Flip a rock or dead tree, and sketch or photograph each animal species that you find. Find as many under-log species as possible. Don’t forget to put the object back, then place the animals beside the object so they can crawl under it.

E) Find a moon snail and watch it move across the sand. 

Moon snails like sandy bottomed shallows in the ocean and harbors. A snorkel set might  increase your chances of finding one. We have some sets our members can borrow.  Dane Street Beach and Wingaersheek Beach are both good options!

F) Watch the sunrise and sunset all on the same day! Try using a compass to see what the bearing is of each and record the bearings and times.

You can borrow a compass at the Get Outside Center, and we can teach you to use it.

G) Find and photograph 3 middens made up of remnants of different kinds of food (like pine cones, hickory nuts, etc.), and make an educated guess about what animal made them.

Middens are the small piles of leftovers rodents leave after eating. Mammal tracking and sign books can help you identify the animal.  Libraries may have copies and there are also many available for perusal at the Get Outside Center.  Anyone can use the books and guides in the Center, but members can check them out for free!    

H) Go to an outdoor wild place and find the largest and smallest wild creatures you can. Photograph and identify them.

Try looking closely at leaves and bark for small creatures. Many larger creatures come out at dawn and dusk. Venture out at these times, choose a place to sit quietly and blend in, and see what you find

Additional Resources:

All types of gear and equipment are available for members to borrow for free at the Get Outside Center.  We also have many interesting books and field guides available for perusal at the GOC.  Anyone can use the books and guides in the Center, but members can check them out for free!   The GOC also has trail maps for many public wildlands across Essex County that you can take with you. 

How to get your prize:

Drop by the Get Outside Center, 186 Main Street, Gloucester, with your photos, sketches, completed Challenge Board, and anything else you'd like to share.  Or email jessica@kestreleducation.org with photos of your adventures and your completed board.  Although we'd love for you to send along photos, videos and stories for fun as you go, please note that a completed challenge should be sent as one final submission all together.