"All sounds are sharper in winter." That quote, attributed to famed 19th-century naturalist John Burroughs, is how arts writer Jennifer Kabat begins her hour-and-a-half-long guided audio walk through the winter landscape of the Catskills.
It's part of a project that Kabat, along with her collaborators, New Zealand artist Kate Newby, curator Tim Saltarelli and writer Anna Moschovakis, are calling the "January February March."
The project is part podcast, part art installation and part snowy winter ramble through two Delaware County towns: Middletown, near the center of the Catskill Park, and Hobart, the home of a large oxycodone factory and the "Hobart Book Village."
Moschovakis and Kabat each narrate a separate guided audio walk along a blazed and marked path where Newby has installed art installations. Newby is known for her evanescent pebble skimming art installations, where the act of throwing a pebble away is art. (Or is it? Newby wants you to wonder.)
You can listen to Kabat's walk narration live on the website; Moschovakis's walk will be available soon. The idea is to download the audio, then strap on your snowshoes and set out, with the narration as your guide.
"The project is meant to explore places and moments that might be ignored or overlooked," the organizers write on their webpage. The Catskills are perfect for this kind of curious wandering -- there's always something bizarre and exciting around the bend, like a giant drug factory, one of the subjects of the Hobart walk, or the history of weather modification, which has a Middletown connection. (Kabat says that some of the first large scale weather modification projects took place there in 1950.)
The weather is going to be frigid this weekend, so make sure to dress for sub-zero temperatures if you're planning to do either walk. The Hobart walk will be installed all winter, but the Margaretville walk will only be available for two days: Saturday, Feb. 14 and Monday, Feb. 16.
The January February March. Margaretville walk: Bull Run Road, Margaretville. Feb. 14 and Feb. 16. Download audio here. Hobart walk: Liberty Rock Books, 678 Main Street, Hobart. Available all winter. thejanuaryfebruarymarch.com.