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  1. #1
    Registered User Megapixel's Avatar
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    Default VT vacation help needed

    What would be the best town to stay in in VT to access the long trail and the side trails of it for a weeks vacation?

    http://www.postholer.com/ontrail
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  2. #2
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    someone may have some specifics ideas that get around the hurdle that i am going to describe, but in general, if one is to attempt something like this and stay in one spot the entire time after a few days youre going to be driving a long way to get to the AT/LT since the trail is very linear in VT.

    if for sake of argument you aim for 100 miles of hiking in a week. if you pick a spot in the center, lets say manchester for example, on your first day and last day of hiking you're going to drive 100 miles roundtrip to and from the trail.

    i think it would be better to move every couple of days

  3. #3
    Registered User somers515's Avatar
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    My vote would be for either Waterbury/Waterbury Center or Stowe. Both are relatively close to Mt. Mansfield and Camel's Hump. Stowe is a little fancier. Waterbury Center has the Green Mountain Club HQ. Vermont is awesome, enjoy your vacation!
    LT End-to-Ender 2017; AT from Lehigh Gap to Hudson River; NH 26/48
    "Your assumptions are your windows on the world. Scrub them off every once in a while, or the light won't come in." - Isaac Asimov

  4. #4

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    There is a lot in the area near burlington/stowe. You could stay some days right in Burlington as well; it gives you other good options for evening walks on the waterfront/pedestrian street, and has a great bike path that goes out to a scenic causeway. It is around 45 min from multiple great places: underhill state park (base of mansfield), camel's hump, stowe, and the west side of mount mansfield is very quiet other than day hikers. We have stayed at underhill state park in leantos there a couple times... and it's great

    For pure proximity, I agree that the stowe area is good.

    If you stay up near burlington/stowe, you can do multiple hikes at mansfield & camel's hump (harder area), mix in several other things (several biking options if you bike), and access other good trails within an hour or two. The inn at long trail (near rutland) trailhead is also a good one for a day or two, and you can grab some food or stay down at the inn while you're there

    You could also detour over to NH for a day. Eg: Franconia notch isn't too far from those areas (<2 hours) . The flume trail (easy) or the franconia ridge hike (challenging/awesome) are both there, among many other things.

  5. #5
    Registered User Megapixel's Avatar
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    This has been super helpful so far. We have about 8 days and normally that would be spent entirely in the woods wit single resupply. Some eye surgeries are forcing this trip to be more about day hikes. Trying to decide on VT or NH . Gaspe and Forillon are on the radar as well but somewhat unlikely as of now. Again, thanks to all of u for the help.

    http://www.postholer.com/ontrail
    2011 H.F.-Duncannon, Katahdin-Rangeley
    2012 Springer-Erwin



  6. #6
    Hiker bigcranky's Avatar
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    Waterbury. It has a nice little downtown with places to stay, restaurants, bars, etc. (We stayed at the Old Stagecoach Inn and thoroughly enjoyed it.) It's close to Camel's Hump, the Stowe/Mansfield area, Sterling Pond/Whiteface Mountain, Burnt Rocks, etc. Yeah, if you're doing dayhikes you'll need to drive a bit, and some of them are really long days, but it's a good central location with excellent hiking in both directions. Also check out Waitsfield with access to Lincoln Gap and Appalachian Gap. Not too far away by car.

    I initially thought the Inn at Long Trail would be good (and it's a *great* place for hikers to stay), but there's not really any exceptional trail other than the climb of Killington south of the Inn. The trail north of there is not great for a long time.
    Ken B
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    Our Long Trail journal

  7. #7
    Some days, it's not worth chewing through the restraints.
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    I third the Waterbury recommendation. Close to some of the best parts of the LT, great side trails, nice choice of restaurants, close to Burlington (our version of the "Big City") or Montpelier (state Capitol), canoeing/kayaking, fishing.

  8. #8

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    As others have mentioned the LT in VT is linear so its a lot of driving to go anywhere. As a friend in VT commented once with respect to hiking in NH, NH just has more trails and better terrain than VT. Pick any tourist town in NH like Lincoln/Woodstock or Jackson/Bartlett/Conway and you have numerous loops you can make with little driving. If you want the trails but want a bit more remote, the Gorham NH area has the whites and not far way are the Western Maine mountains. Head north of RT2 and its gets decidedly rural for the east. Unlike VT, going east to west is lot easier.

    There is also tubing/canoeing whitewater rafting in the area. If you want to try ATVing there is 1000 miles of ATV trails in the north country and places that will rent you one for the day.

  9. #9
    imscotty's Avatar
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    Just my perspective...

    You are getting good advice on Waterbury, nice little town, a few nearby attractions, a great beer town if you are in to that sort of thing. But if I were you I would split things up and spend some time on the Burlington side of VT too. Lots of attractions around Burlington too. I highly recommend the Shelburne Museum if you are in to Americana and Folk Art.

    Please be aware of the logistical problems associated with day hiking a linear trail like the Long Trail. Most of the sections from road crossing to road crossing are 2-3 day hikes apart, and then you have to get back to your car. I recommend Camel's Hump as my favorite peak in this area. A day hike to the top of Camel's Hump and back will be a pretty strenuous day. Might I suggest you consider using some of the ski lifts to get up on a ridge to make some of your days easier. I think the Mount Mansfield one should be running. I am not sure if the Mad River lift runs in the summer, but if it does you could do a nice little ridge walk there to Mount Abraham and back.

    Honestly, if this is your first time to Vermont I would suggest just a few days of hiking and the rest spent exploring the towns and sites of this beautiful state.
    “For of all sad words of tongue or pen,
    the saddest are these, 'It might have been.”


    John Greenleaf Whittier

  10. #10

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    although the trails are pretty hard there, there are some very manageable day hikes if you're in good shape for the up and down
    mansfield has multiple options, some just 6 or 7 miles out and back.
    https://vtstateparks.com/assets/pdf/underhilltrails.pdf

    I just did a loop there from underhill state park last week. I added a ways south on the long trail and some side trails to make it truly kick my ass, but the basic loops can be done in a few hours (longer if not in good shape)
    Same with camel's hump
    https://vtstateparks.com/assets/pdf/...ump_trails.pdf

    Obviously you can find these trail maps easily... I'm linking them because I was just there and I have a "vermont trails" folder!

    Years ago we stayed at ricker pond state park. We wanted to do some western NH, but also found the value (leanto) and quietness in vermont is a lot nicer. That location was 1 hour from great spots in the Western white mountains, 1 hours from mansfield trailheads in VT, 1 hour from camel's hump's eastern trailhead

    Many options, but I always prefer staying in vermont over NH because of the crowds and the value in VT

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