The GMC’s Day Hiker’s Guide to Vermont and Long Trail Guide describe nearly all of Vermont’s hiking trails. The Day Hiker’s Guide describes more than 150 trails to mountains, scenic ponds and waterfalls, and nature trails in the Green Mountains and beyond. In the Long Trail Guide, you will find detailed maps and descriptions of the Long Trail System and the Appalachian Trail in Vermont, suggested day hikes, shelter descriptions, public campgrounds near the trail, and snowshoeing and skiing suggestions.
Please plan ahead and prepare when going for any hike. We strongly suggest that hikers carry a guidebook and map when heading out to the trails.
Here are some suggested summer hikes:
Worcester Mountain, Worcester: This 2.5 mile trail steadily follows an old road before narrowing into a steep, rocky ascent. The trail occasionally follows a beautiful vein of quartz in the rock. From the open summit, views of the Green Mountains, White Mountains, and southern Worcester range can be seen. If you are looking for a longer adventure, continue onto the Skyline Trail all the way to Mount Hunger.
Mount Pisgah, Westmore: Mt. Pisgah forms the east side of Willoughby Gap and offers amazing views from the top of the sheer cliffs that line Lake Willoughby. There are three trail options that provide moderate ascents with nice views along the way.
Belvidere Mountain, Eden: A difficult 7.9 mile loop can be made by connecting Frank Post Trail, the Long Trail, and Forester’s Trail. Along the way, stop and have lunch at Tillotson Camp then continue on to climb the fire tower on the summit of Belvidere for 360 views.
Shelburne Bay Park, Shelburne: This easy 2.5 mile loop follows the shoreline of Shelburne Bay. There are many beautiful viewpoints as well as access to the water along the way.
Ludlow Mountain (Okemo), Ludlow: This moderate Healdville Trail leads 3 miles to the summit of Ludlow Mountain, home of Okemo Mountain Resort. From the summit, a fire tower provides views of Mt. Ascutney, Killington, Stratton, and Bromley.
Mt. Olga, Wilmington: An easy 2.0 mile loop can be made by families and novice hikers looking to summit a smaller mountain with nice views. Mt. Olga became a fire lookout site in 1930, but the current steel tower was transferred from Bald Mountain in 1950. From the top of the tower, there are wonderful views of Southern Vermont, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts.
Harmon Hill, Bennington: Though only 1.8 miles to the top of Harmon Hill, this section of the Long Trail is a thigh burner! It climbs a steep, rock staircase for about 0.7 miles before shallowing out in beautiful open woods then traveling through ferny glades to the beautiful views of the open summit.
North Stratton Mountain, Stratton: The Wanderer Trail leaves from Stratton Mountain Ski Resort and gradually winds 2.4 miles across ski trails and past chairlifts to the summit. Nice views are found throughout from the open ski trails. To continue to Stratton Mountain follow Stratton Ridge Trail to the Long Trail.
Spruce Mountain, Plainfield: This family-friendly trail winds 2.2 miles to the summit where a fire tower provides 360 views of the surrounding area. Originally built in 1919 and replaced in 1944, the current tower was placed on the National Historic Lookout Register.
Bald Top Mountain, Fairlee: There are multiple moderate routes to the summit of this small mountain. All of them are well marked allowing for easy trail finding for novice hikers. From the summit, spectacular views of Mt. Moosilauke and the Franconia Ridge in New Hampshire can be found.
Appalachian Trail, Maine Junction to Norwich: This 44 mile section of the AT has many day hike options that provide rolling hills, open pastures, views, and shelters. Make your day as long or as short as you want. Specific suggestions can be found in our Day Hiker’s Guide.
Mt. Ascutney: A true monadnock, Mt. Ascutney has many interesting features with trails for all ability levels. Hikers can visit waterfalls, old granite quarry, and a stone hut site. The stone hut was built in 1858 as an overnight shelter for hikers. A fire tower at the summit provides 360 views.
Snake Mountain, Addison: An easy 1.8 mile trail climbs 900’ to the summit of Snake Mountain. A concrete foundation from a hotel built around 1870 remains and provides an excellent view of Champlain Valley and the Adirondacks. Please take note that the western cliffs are closed until August 1st due to Peregrine Falcon nesting.
Stark’s Nest, Irasville: Starting at Mad River Glen Ski Area, a moderate 5.3 mile loop starts with Stark Mountain Trail which brings hikers across ski trails and past the famous single chair to the beautiful views at the top of Stark’s Nest. Rest at the warming hut before taking a rugged section of the Long Trail to Sunnyside Trail.
Sunset Ledge, Lincoln Gap: Although short, this 1.1 mile section of Long Trail steeply climbs to open ledges that offer views of Lake Champlain and the Adirondacks.
The Presidents, Lincoln: This difficult 12.4 loop via Cooley Glen Trail, the Long Trail, and Emily Proctor Trail is aptly named as it brings hikers over Mt. Cleveland, Mt. Roosevelt, and Mt. Wilson. The two shelters along the way provide nice places to rest during this long adventure.