Trip Reports for April – June 2007


April 7, 2007
Jay Peak via the Long Trail
Peter Cottrell

7 participants. We donned our snowshoes and started north on the Long Trail shortly after 10:00AM. Our intrepid party was greeted by about 12 inches of new powder over a deep, consolidated base. At first the route was obvious but one third of the way to the top, the trail became obscure and we zigzagged upward in flurries. Along the way Rich spotted a cedar waxwing. Occasionally we would spot a blaze in the open woods but after what seemed a very short time we were forcing our way through spruce thickets. At about 3100 ft we “discovered” a Jay Peak ski trail. Eschewing the ski trail, we plunged back into the spruce until luck brought us to another ski trail near the summit with a sign marking “The Long Trail”. By 12:15 we were enjoying lunch and drying our gloves on a hot radiator in the tram summit station. The snack bar was closed so Rich did not get the hot dog he craved. Rested and fortified, we climbed the stairs to the summit and then started our descent. With the exception of a few “fanny slides” over ice-covered rocks, the descent was uneventful and we reach the cars before 3:00PM. As we approached the cars Joanie remarked on the beauty of the woods in the snow, “This is why we live in Vermont”. Participants – Rachel Moulton, Jenny Lynch, Rich Larsen, Sheri Larsen, Constance Quintin, Joanie Vaccarelli, Peter Cottrell

April 14, 2007
Jerusalem Trail to Mt Ellen
Richard Larsen

8 participants. There was almost no new snow in Burlington, but above the Jerusalam trailhead we quickly found 8” of new wet snow, changing to a foot or more of new powder above about 2000’. Snowshoes were required for all. About half-way up the trail, we lost the blue blazes, either due to snow-blastered trees or to snow depth. So, we basically headed up, steeply at times, until we reached the ridge and found the Long Trail. One of the participants was tracking us with his GPS, so we knew we were south of the Jerusalem Trail as we climbed, but it seemed easier to go up than to look for the trail. Once on the ridge, we just stayed on the ridge, finding a white blaze occasionally – sometimes at snow line, sometimes a foot above – and there were probably many buried under the snow. In some places the trail was ‘obvious’, but as a ‘Hobbit Trail’ about 3 feet high. Because some of us had time constraints, and progress had been slowed by the snow, we turned around about ¾ mile short of Mount Ellen. One participant continued on, essentially jogging to the summit and back in snowshoes, and caught up with us before we started off the ridge. (Ah, to be young and very fit again!) We were out about six hours total – 3:40 to where we stopped, 20 minutes for lunch, and then 2 hours back down. Participants – Bob Lang, Bryan C, Jenny Lynch, Marc Faucher, Peggy Faucher, Karl Riemer, Sheri Larsen, Rich Larsen

April 17, 2007
Spruce Mountain
Pete Saile

4 participants. At 3,037′, Spruce Mtn isn’t the highest peak in the area, but the 4 of us seemed to squeeze the best out of the crummy weather (visibility from atop the tower – poor with blowing rain and mist) and a Friday out of the office. Oh, what I am really referencing is 2 of the hikers, Karl and Jack are retired!! Linda and I are still working for the man, but Linda delivered a wonderful growler of beer homemade by her husband Rich (many thanks Rich!!!!!). Brie and crackers by Karl, pretzels by Jack and homemade pesto by Pete. OK, we had a fun time with a little repast and had a chance to enjoy each others’ company……for 2 hrs. Jack reports!!!! Actually, isn’t this just what James P. Taylor referenced regarding hiking and the Long Trail? While not on the LT, all attendees were LT members and a good time was had by all. John Muir stated: “Climb those mtns and grab their good tidings”. WE DID. Had it been clear, we would have been treated to spectacular views in all directions. When you do hike it, bring your binocs. Hiking time: approx 1.5 hrs. Degree of difficulty: easy with a little steepness at the top. Suitable for families. Participants: Linda Evans, Jack Lutz, Karl Riemer, Pete Saile.

April 21, 2007
Shelburne Farms, rescheduled from Moosalamoo
Dot Myer

7 participants. The leader spoke with the ranger in Ripton, and learned that the road to Moosalamoo was closed, so the trip was moved to Shelburne Farms. It was a beautiful day and all had a good time. There were no new baby lambs, but we saw sheep and goats, among other things. The number of participants was likely reduced by not doing Moosalamoo. Participants – Kristin Dearborn, Klaus Nierle, Carolyn Elliott, Karl Riemer, Pat Collier, Pat Hignite, Dot Myer.

April 28, 2007
Knox and Butterfield Mountains
Phil Schlosser

8 participants. We started at a big snowmobile parking area on 302. From there we followed V.A.S.T trails to the pass between Knox and Butterfield. Snowmobilers can be somewhat controversial in the hiking community but we bushwhackers like to follow their trails! The bushwhack up to Knox was through a nice hardwood forest and there was plenty of snow for snowshoes. We had a nice lunch break on Knox’s mostly open summit. Once back to the V.A.S.T trail we decided that one mountain was enough and Butterfield would be waiting for us on anther day. Participants: Patrick Burke, Lane Dunn, Phil Hazen, Kate Hunter, Karl Riemer, Phil Schlosser, Kerry Shea, Joel Tilley

May 5, 2007
Trail Work
John Sharp / Pam Gillis

11 participants. It was a nice day, and we cleared trail from Jonesville to the Bolton Notch Road. Participants – Glen Marshall, Jeff Bostwick, John Pennucci, Linda Evans, Dot Myer, George Long, Carlene Squires, John Kinne, John Brown, Pam Gillis, and one other.

May 11, 2007
Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge Birdwatching
Linda Evans

7 participants. It was a pleasant mix of ornithologic experts and novices that set forth from the visitors center on this warm and sunny, cool and breazy, everything but snowy Spring day. We began our ‘hike’ by sitting on the platform overlooking the beaver pond, lazily eating our lunches while watching the redwing blackbirds and swifts flitting overhead, eating their lunches. Later we walked along the old abandoned railroad bed, past meadows and swampy bogs. We saw many ducks, geese, and mallards, a muskrat, turtles, and a heron or two flying overhead. Highlight of the trip was listening to the comical OOONKA CHOONK, OONKA CHOONK of an American Bittern hiding in the brush. Participants – Julie Nelson (and apparently nameless?) husband, Fiona and Luke (young bird lovers), Pete Saile, Karl Riemer, Linda Evans

May 12, 2007
Trail Work
Pam Gillis / John Sharp

14 participants. The large group split into 3 smaller groups, and did the Bolton Notch Road to the intersection of Buchanan Shelter, plus Eagle’s Nest to Buchanan. Participants – Llyn Ellison, George Long, Dot Myer, Ken Austin, Ted Albers, Jeanette Berry, Emily Berry, Russ Kinaman, John Mitchelides, Phil Schlosser, John Sharp, Pam Gillis, and two others.

May 20, 2007
Women’s Trail Workshop
Pam Gillis

9 participants. The group cleared the Frost Trail. Women loved the concept, and want it to be an annual event. It was a nice day, but folks needed to get back early. Participants – Helaine Kliger, Wendy Savoie, Nancy Reynolds, Melissa Mehar, Alessandra Capretti, Louanne Nielsen, Joannie Mallory, Linda Evans, Pam Gillis.

May 26, 2007
Ausable Lakes area Waterfalls Hike
Dot Myer

3 participants. We enjoyed the many small waterfalls along Gill Brook. Then we had lunch and a beautiful view at Fishhawk Cliffs. Since time was running out, we did not go to the two biggest waterfalls – Rainbow Falls and Beaver Meadow Falls. We hiked out the road instead. Participants – Patrick Burke, Carolyn Eliot, Dot Myer

May 27, 2007
Long Trail Work Outing
Pam Gillis / John Sharp

8 participants. The group cleared Lake Mansfield to the summit of Mount Mayo, plus the Clara Bow trail. It was a long day, but a nice day. Participants – Bill Hancy, Kevin McAleer, George Long, Dot Myer, Phil, Mike Myers, John Sharp, Pam Gillis

May 28, 2007
Mount Mansfield Loop
Richard Larsen

9 participants. The possible morning rain did not occur, and we were able to head up under mixed sun and clouds, with fewer clouds as the day progressed. We went up the CCC Road and then Maple Ridge Trail, the latter being fairly slippery since the rocks were still drying from the night before. We went across the ridge from the forehead to the chin on the Long Trail, and then backtracked to the Sunset Ridge Trail and down that route. We did lose one person at the intersection of the Laura Cowles and Sunset Ridge Trails, as the person headed down Laura Cowles by mistake, unknown to the others. Since we were not able to account for everyone on Sunset Ridge, the leader went back up to search, but realized this was fruitless. Since it was a very good day, with lots of people on the mountain, and since the missing person was known to have a cell phone, we finally headed down assuming that the person would not be in serious trouble. We got down to the State Park and learned that the person was already out. It is a reminder to the participants and the leader to keep the group together a bit more, and to remind folks that no one should go through intersections without waiting for the group. Participants – Marc Faucher, Peggy Faucher, Jenny Lynch, MaryAnn Martinez, Marie Badger, Ben Gordesky, Jean Kissner, Sheri Larsen, Richard Larsen

May 31, 2007
Wheeler Mountain and Wheeler Pond Camps
Linda Evans
I got a lot of interest for this trip but only one other person actually materialized. The weather was on the wet side, causing quite a harrowing hike up the rock-faced “short but STEEP” trail of Wheeler Mountain. The view of clouds flitting quickly over the surrounding hills and valleys was a powerful sight. Later back at the cabin we enjoyed some stimulating conversation and fabulous food as we relaxed on the porch of Hadsel-Mares. GMC’s Wheeler Pond Camps are a terrific resource, not to be missed!
Participants: Linda Evans, Karl Riemer.

June 2, 2007
National Trails Day Work Hike
Pam Gillis / John Sharp

12 participants. The team split into two groups, John taking one to do Eagle’s Nest to Raven’s Wind (on the LT), and Pam going to the Underhill State Park area. This group did Laura Cowles, Subway, and Halfway House. Participants – Jason Guerrero, John Pennucci, John Kinne, Jenny Lynch, Phil, Tyler Lobdell, Nathan Tuxel, Adra Cooper, Glen Marshall, Josh, Pam Gillis, John Sharp.

June 8, 2007
Mount Hunger
Sheri Larsen

3 participants. We had a small group with a strong pace, so we made the top in good time, even though we stopped along the way to examine numerous wildflowers. We had an early lunch and hung out at the top while enjoying the warm weather and nice views. After the hike was over, Debbie treated the Larsens to ice cream cones at Ben and Jerry’s. It was a nice way to spend a Friday. Participants – Sheri Larsen, Richard Larsen, Debbie Marcus.

June 9, 2007
Brandon Gap to Middlebury Gap
Phil Schlosser

5 participants. This group of Long Trail section hikers and mediocre flower identifiers left Brandon Gap at about 9:15 on the way to Middlebury Gap. Along the way we were able to identify Jack-in-the-Pulpit, Golden Thread, Trillium, and some other wild flower varieties. The weather was very cooperative with partly cloudy skies all day. This section has no classic rocky summits but there are plenty of nice outlooks along the way. One of us was smart enough to bring along a bug net – she used it, too. And for those of you that are keeping score, this hike crosses three official 3000 footers – Cape Lookoff Mountain, Gillespie Peak, and Worth Mountain. Near the end of the hike the male participants thought they were getting delirious when women in bathing suits seemed to be appearing out of nowhere. Could this have something to do with “Romance Gap”? As it turned out, this was just a group swimming in Lake Pleiad. Participants – Frances Delwiche, Richard Hart, Mary Keenan, Angie Garand, Phil Schlosser.

June 17, 2007
Mount Hunger / Stowe Pinnacle Traverse
Richard Larsen (for Peter Cottrell)

5 participants. The planned trip over Mount Worchester and Stowe Pinnacle was modified to shorten the shuttle, deciding instead to do Mount Hunger and Stowe Pinnacle. With very humid weather and possible PM thunderstorms, we decided to do Mount Hunger first, so we would not have to cross that open dome in the PM. (We could always bypass the open summit of Stowe Pinnacle.) We started hiking at 9:30 AM, and finished a little after 3:30 PM. The air was always very humid, thick and hazy, and we got a few sprinkles of rain as we traversed the ridge, but no storms developed, and we were able to spend time on each of Mount Hunger and Stowe Pinnacle. The trail was very rocky and ‘rooty’, and almost everyone took a moderate-to-hard tumble at some point, but thankfully no one was injured. We successfully identified almost all the wildflowers along the way. Participants – Jenny Lynch, Ursula McVeigh, John Kinne, Sheri Larsen, Richard Larsen

June 24, 2007
Cascade Mountain – ADK
Dot Myer

9 Participants. It is a nice hike, short and steep. We had good weather. Four people made it to the top. The 5 others turned around near the “hard place” a few hundred feet from the summit. Judging from the number of people that joined the trip, there seems to be interest in slow-paced hikes. Participants – Carol Hignite, Liliane Siegel, Connie Hitt, Pat Collier, Rachel Moulton, Eric Lazarus, Irena Case, Ronni Leibowitz, Dot Myer

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