Submitted by Steve Lotspiech. We have an abundance of great trails and paths for people of all abilities in the northern Green Mountains and throughout the Green Mountain Byway. The Long Trail follows the main spine of the Green Mountains from south to north through the Byway. This includes the destination of Prospect Rock which is a 2.6 mile round trip on the Long Trail to the north Route 15 and the Lamoille River. The vista of the Lamoille River valley looking west is well worth the climb as seen in the picture below. In addition to this hike, from the parking area on the north side of Route 15, make sure to go south on the Long Trail a short distance to the suspension footbridge over the Lamoille River and view or explore the scenic rocky shoreline of the river.
There are some excellent options for ADA accessible trails and paths for people who are differently abled. Waterbury Center State Park has an ADA accessible path that starts near the boat ramp and follows the shoreline of the Waterbury Reservoir. The path includes an accessible fishing area as shown in the photo below. The Lamoille Valley Rail Trail is also ADA accessible throughout the section from Morrisville to Jeffersonville.
For those looking for a more rigorous climb, the Stowe Pinnacle boasts great views of Camel’s Hump, Mt. Mansfield and the nearby peaks in the Worcester Range. Stowe Pinnacle can be hiked one of two ways: either from the trailhead on Upper Hollow Road which is a 3.6 mile round-trip, or from the Pinnacle Meadows parking lot, which shortens the hike to a 2.6 mile round-trip.
For maps of these and various other trails and paths in the Byway area, check on-line or stop by the Green Mountain Club in Waterbury Center, Umiak Outdoor Outfitters in Stowe, Power Play Sports in Morrisville, and Waterbury Center or Little River State Park.
Here are a few words of caution and safety if you are venturing out into our back woods, overlooks, mountaintops, lakes, and along the river and stream valleys. It is best to “buddy up” with a friend or family member. Take all weather clothing and footwear, your cell phone and a small first aid kit in case of an emergency. Stay on marked trails to avoid dangerous situations and the risk of getting lost. Match your ability to the trail and most of all, have fun!