Goldbrook RV Park
One of the last highlights of our time in Vermont would be hiking to the highest point in the state. Especially since we struck out in the two previous states, New Hampshire and Maine. Mt. Mansfield is the highest elevation in Vermont at 4,393 feet with a gain of close to 2000 feet. It would be 10 miles round trip back to the truck.
We drove to Underhill State Park to begin the hike.
Oh, we're smiling now. Not so much a few hours later!
We parked and hiked up the CCC road for 1 mile to get to the trailhead.
This is a moderate to strenuous, all uphill trail with some scrambling.
There are several huge chunks of quartz which is common in the Green Mountains. It's very pretty. Some are covered with moss.
You probably can't see it, but at the top center of the mountain ridge are some antennas. We will be parallel to these at the top and you will see much closer up pictures of them.
Once you leave the tree line you get up into the alpine where the trees are much shorter and scraggly due to the extreme cold and winds. Now you begin to climb the interesting rock dome-like area.
Up here the rock has interesting swirling textures of fine sandy loam and quartz. Really unusual and it reminded me of the outside of oyster shells.
The trail switchbacks up the alpine ridge. Once you break onto the ridge, there is no shelter if a quick moving storm should come through.
Just follow the blue blaze up, up and up.
"Are we there yet?"
That top peak is not actually the summit. You can't see it as it is behind the first peak.
There are several large cairns to help guide you up.
At the junction it's just another mile or so up the Long Trail to the summit.
I didn't get pictures of the planks, but you walk over a couple and then climb the last stretch.
There's those antennas I mentioned earlier.
There it is, up ahead, the TOP!
And here we are! At the "chin".
The summit marker.
It's very cold and windy up here so a quick snack, rest and a couple of pictures and down we go. To the north is Canada, NY to the west and if you look east you can see Smugglers Notch.
Down is always harder and a little rough on the knees and feet so you have to keep enjoying those views and try not to think about it.
SUCCESS in Vermont !!