ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Maryland officials are using the popular hobby of geocaching to promote awareness of the state’s forests.

Geocaching is an outdoor treasure hunt that uses GPS technology to find hidden items. The Big Tree Geocache leads participants to some of Maryland’s biggest trees.

State Forester Steve Koehn says the tour announced Monday is designed to get families outside and highlight the role trees play in protecting water and air quality, as well as providing wildlife habitat and jobs.

The tour is being held as part of the International year of Forests. The Department of Natural Resources says the declaration by the United Nation’s General Assembly is designed to raise awareness of forest conservation and sustainable management and development.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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