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Best Mountain Daytrips

West Des Moines...
Level Contributor
12 posts
37 reviews
Best Mountain Daytrips

Hello!

I plan to check off Vermont as my 49th of 50 States this September. Specifically I want to spend some time in Burlington but I also want to go to the best parts of the Green Mountains for some easy to moderate hiking, good views, and ideally less than 3 hours from Burlington if possible (but willing to venture further if necessary). What are your favorite parts of the Green Mountains or other mountain ranges in Vermont?

10 replies to this topic
Ormond Beach...
Destination Expert
for Vermont, Ormond Beach
Level Contributor
9,641 posts
93 reviews
1. Re: Best Mountain Daytrips

My top pick for easy hiking is to take the toll road in Stowe to the top of Mt. Mansfield & hike along the "Long Trail" along the summit ridge - as well as a host of other trails that intersect it. It is spectacular. Best views in the state IMO - esp. western views of Lake Champlain & NY's Adirondacks. You can dial the degree of hiking from an easy walk to difficult scrambles. There are 100s of other hikes in the state that are great.... but none pack so much scenery into so little effort.

Another favorite is the Frost Trail on the western side of Mt. Mansfield, from the Stevensville Road trailhead. It's a rather steep hike thru the woods for about a mile, then you emerge onto the bottom of Maple Ridge - which has gorgeous 180 degree western views. You can go a high as you please, then turn back. Or there's a nice 3-4 hour moderately challenging loop, going up the Butler Lodge Trail, then across Rock Garden to Maple Ridge to Frost, which descends back to the start of Butler Lodge.

Vermont
Destination Expert
for Vermont
Level Contributor
2,518 posts
38 reviews
2. Re: Best Mountain Daytrips

For a super easy and short (20ish minutes if you are in shape) is Mount Philo, which is 30 min south of Burlington. Gorgeous views of the Champlain Valley, Lake Champlain and the Adirondacks. Have a picnic up top.

As noted above, if you want bigger mountains head east from Burlington to Mt. Mansfield, Camels Hump, etc.

Vermont
Level Contributor
130 posts
18 reviews
3. Re: Best Mountain Daytrips

Snake Mountain is a fairly easy hike, with a very nice view at the top. Its down near Middlebury. Also, Moss Glen Falls is a nice one as well.

Ormond Beach...
Destination Expert
for Vermont, Ormond Beach
Level Contributor
9,641 posts
93 reviews
4. Re: Best Mountain Daytrips

VTer - That's probably 20ish minutes to get to the top, yes? Then some photo time, and 15-20ish going down. Agreed that the views from the top are superb! :)

Vermont
Destination Expert
for Vermont
Level Contributor
2,518 posts
38 reviews
5. Re: Best Mountain Daytrips

Yes....should have clarified that! 20ish up, however long you want to spend at the top, and 20ish down.

Burlington, Vermont
Destination Expert
for Burlington
Level Contributor
3,097 posts
12 reviews
6. Re: Best Mountain Daytrips

Best way to see the green mountains is to get up on them above the tree line, but there are not many easy-moderate hikes to do that from the bottom. So in Stowe you can get up Mt. Mansfield by the Toll Road (driving) or the gondola at the ski resort. https://www.stowe.com/activities/summer/ The down side to Stowe is that it's relatively expensive (the toll road is cheaper than the gondola), and it can get crowded on a nice summer day.

A bit south from there, you can take the lift up at Sugarbush. https:/… This lift at Sugarbush won't get you up as high as the options at Stowe, but it should be less crowded and a relaxing way to experience the mountains on a nice day.

West Des Moines...
Level Contributor
12 posts
37 reviews
7. Re: Best Mountain Daytrips

Thank you everyone! Looking forward to an awesome trip in September.

5 posts
8. Re: Best Mountain Daytrips

Hi, I’m looking to do the same thing tomorrow. We’re staying in Burlington and can drive to Stowe/Mt. Mansfield. Approximately how much time will it take to hike the “long trail”? We’re not hardcore. Looking for easy hikes. Thanks in advance!

Ormond Beach...
Destination Expert
for Vermont, Ormond Beach
Level Contributor
9,641 posts
93 reviews
9. Re: Best Mountain Daytrips

You can take as long or as short a time as you want. From the top of the toll road, the ridge is about 2.5 miles long, heading north to the 'chin' - the highest point in VT. Most of it is easy-moderate, with some steeper scrambles near the chin. There are great views along most of the way. You can do as much or as little of it as you'd like. I'd say the minimum time you'd want to plan for is about 20 min at the top, and a reasonable maximum for some casual hiking along the ridge might be 2 hours. (And the toll road itself takes about 15 min each way.)

Edited: 28 August 2018, 07:19
5 posts
10. Re: Best Mountain Daytrips

Thank you so much for your help!

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