Let’s HikeVT! These accessible, easy, moderate, and difficult trails in Johnson, VT will take you to the riverbank and the cliffs above the Lamoille River Valley.
- Lamoille River Bridge – EASY
- Prospect Rock via Long Trail – MODERATE
- Laraway Lookout – DIFFICULT
- Lamoille Valley Rail Trail – EASY, ACCESSIBLE
From Long Trail Parking Lot on Route 15:
Lamoille River Bridge – EASY
» 0.8 mi round trip, approx. 0 ft elevation gain
From the parking lot, head north on the Long Trail on a winding stroll through the woods. You’ll pass interesting rock features before coming to the banks of the Lamoille River. If the water is high (ex: after a heavy storm or during spring snowmelt), end your hike here and picnic near the bank. If the water is low, cross through to the island and continue on the LT until the Lamoille Suspension bridge. The bridge, completed in 2005 by GMC’s construction crew, provides views of the river as well as a great spot for photos.
Prospect Rock via the Long Trail – MODERATE
» 2.8 mi round trip, approx. 540 ft elevation gain
Follow the directions above for the Lamoille River Bridge. Once you reach the bridge, continue North on the LT as it crosses the bridge and Hogback Road. After Hogback Rd the trail winds its way up another mile until it reaches the top of Prospect Rock. Enjoy sweeping views of the river valley and watch rock climbers tackle routes up the cliffs.
Note: If the water is too high to cross the Lamoille River, park instead at a pull-off on Hogback Road and begin your hike there. The dirt parking spot is just west of where the LT crosses the road.
Driving directions to Long Trail parking lot on Route 15:
From Jeffersonville: Starting at the traffic circle, head east on VT-15 E for 6.0 miles. 0.5 mi after passing a large church on your left, you’ll see the designated LT parking lot on your left.
From Morrisville: Head west on VT-15 W. Pass through Johnson and continue until you see Johnson Farm and Garden on your right. 0.6 mi after the hardware store, you’ll see the designated LT parking lot on your right.
From Codding Hollow Road Parking Lot:
Laraway Lookout via the Long Trail – DIFFICULT
» 3.6 mi round trip, approx. 1,390 ft elevation gain
From the parking area, continue walking east on Codding Hollow Road until you reach a dirt pull-off on your left. Parking is allowed here in the summer. Start up the Long Trail north from the end of the pull-off. The trail mostly follows old woods roads for the first section of the hike, so be sure to keep an eye out for white blazes on the trees to stay on track. Eventually the trail begins traversing west along the slope of Laraway Mountain, passing under impressive overhanging cliffs. After the cliffs end, the trail climbs moderately to Laraway Lookout. Enjoy the view of the Champlain Valley before heading back the way you came.
Driving directions to Long Trail parking lot on Codding Hollow Road:
From Jeffersonville: From the traffic circle, head north on VT-108 N. Cross the Lamoille River and turn right on VT-109. 1.5 mi after passing the Waterville Town Hall, turn right on Codding Hollow Rd and pass through Jaynes Covered Bridge. Bear right on Codding Hollow Rd when Clark Rd splits off to the left, then bear left on Codding Hollow when Lock Rd splits to the right. Codding Hollow Rd grows narrower and narrower, finally reaching a dirt parking lot on your right.
From Morrisville/Johnson: Head west on VT-15 W. Bear right on Hogback Road after passing Dollar General. When Hogback Rd ends, bear right on VT-109. See directions above.
This parking lot is NOT accessible by car from the east end of Codding Hollow Road. You MUST access lot from the west end in Waterville.
From Johnson Trailhead of Lamoille Valley Rail Trail:
Lamoille Valley Rail Trail – EASY, ACCESSIBLE
This recreation path used to be a railroad bed but has been converted to a multi-use path great for biking, walking, and travel by folks with most mobility aids. We’ve selected one of our favorite sections for you, but options abound on this 17-mile trail of packed crushed stone.
From the Johnson trailhead, you can head west for miles of trail through the woods, crossing several beautiful bridges over tributary brooks. The trail is very slightly sloped, so you will be going slightly downhill as you go west and slightly uphill as you return.
Or you can travel 1.1 miles east through the woods to Dog’s Head Falls. There is almost no elevation change on this section of the rail trail. Please note the short path from the rail trail to the falls is not wheelchair accessible.
For more information, see the Lamoille Valley Rail Trail website at: https://www.lvrt.org/along-the-trail.
Driving Directions to Johnson Rail Trail Parking Lot:
From Jeffersonville: Head east on VT-15 E. As you come into Johnson, turn right on Railroad St. At fork, bear right on Lendway Lane and take an immediate right. The parking lot will be on your right immediately after turning off Lendway.
From Morrisville: Head west on VT-15 W. In the center of Johnson, turn left on Railroad St. See directions above.
Where to eat and drink nearby:
- Morse Mountain Grille at Smugglers’ Notch Resort for lunch or dinner
- The Cupboard Deli for creemees, baked goods, and to-go sandwiches
- Rock Art Brewery in Morrisville for after-hike beers on the porch
- Lost Nation in Morrisville for after-hike beers or for lunch or dinner along the rail trail
- Downtown Pizzeria and Pub in Johnson for slices and sandwiches
- Johnson Farm and Garden for hiking gear and supplies