The Ancestor’s Trail: USA

The Official Ancestor’s Trail USA app

GUIDEBOOK for Opening Day (4/28/2018)


Extended Guidebook (To be used as a compendium to the app)

WHY EVOLUTION MATTERS – brief talks on the guts of evolution by evolutionary leaders across the globe (given as part of the introductory ceremonies for the Ancestor’s Trail USA in April of 2018)
The Ancestor’s Trail USA was made possible by a generous donation from the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science
On April 28, 2018, in collaboration with the Mohonk Preserve, EvoS @ New Paltz hosted the first-ever US offering of the Ancestor’s Trail – a unique educational experience that maps different lineages of life onto real hiking trails – to provide for a first-hand and participatory education regarding the evolution of life.

Interpretive Guide with trails and phylogenetic benchmarks

Ancestor’s Trail USA using the Mohonk Preserve’s map (supplied at the Guard Post)

Get the app here so that you can do the Ancestor’s Trail USA whenever you would like (as long as you comply with the fees, rules, and regulations of the Mohonk Preserve)

This project includes the demarcation of a set of hiking trails that map onto different evolutionary lineages of life – as a one-of-a-kind hands-on evolution education activity that integrates the concepts of evolutionary time scale and natural selection with a great outdoors experience.

This project, based on the highly renowned UK installment of this trail (which has gotten very positive media attention from such entities as Smithsonian Magazine), and ultimately based on Richard Dawkins’ book The Anecstor’s Tale, was implemented by Evolutionary Studies faculty and students at SUNY New Paltz in collaboration with the Mohonk Preserve, which oversees an extraordinary set of trails in our local mountains (the Shawangunks).

The opening-ceremony event took place on Saturday, 4/28 at the Spring Farm Trailhead of the Mohonk Preserve. All the trails in the Ancestor’s Trail USA network begin at that trailhead.

We encourage any and all folks who are interested in taking part in this event to join us! The fee for the general public is $15 (the same as the fee to hike on the Preserve lands for a day). (Registration page will soon be linked here)

The Ancestor’s Trail USA is now available on a FREE and perennial basis via the Ancestor’s Trail USA app, found here.

US Ancestor’s Trail Directors:

Aron Wiegand (M.S, Visiting Scholar in Psychology, SUNY New Paltz)

Glenn Geher (Founding Director of Evolutionary Studies, SUNY New Paltz)

Olivia G. Jewell (Master’s candidate in Psychology, SUNY New Paltz)

NOTE: The idea for the Ancestor’s Trail came from renowned UK science educator,  Chris Jenord


Trail Information