Description - With 350,000 acres and over 500 miles of trails stretching over two-thirds the length of Vermont, the Green Mountain National Forest offers endless opportunities for people of all ages and abilities to get into the great outdoors all year long. From rugged mountain tops to secluded streams, you'll discover the ideal place for every activity from birding, berry picking, canoeing to cross-country skiing, mountain biking and snowmobiling. The legendary Appalachian Trail and Long Trail run through the Forest with a network of well-maintained shelters spaced a day's hike apart. Rustic campgrounds give you the chance to get away from it all.
- The Green Mountain is Vermont's National Forest. Hills and mountains, ponds and brooks, it is a recreation jewel. With over 350,000 acres, it represents 50% of all public lands in Vermont. The Forest is among the region's leading attractions for outdoor enthusiasts, yet at the same time, a carefully supervised supplier of timber, wildlife habitat and clean water.
The Forest's scenic beauty along the backbone of Vermont's Green Mountains offers unlimited recreation opportunities any season of the year. Whether you are a hiker, skier, camper, fishing or hunting enthusiast, or wildlife watcher, the Green Mountain National Forest can provide the recreational experience you are seeking!
The Appalachian Trail leads through the Green Mountain National Forest. The Trail is a public footpath, which is 2,155 miles long. It follows the Appalachian Mountain ridgelines from Georgia to Maine. A portion of the Appalachian Trail that passes through Vermont coincides with the Long Trail which runs the length of Vermont.
The Green Mountain National Forest contains six designated Wilderness Areas. Big Branch Wilderness Area is part of the White Rocks National Recreation Area located on the northern half of the Manchester District. The White Rocks National Recreation Area also includes the Peru Peak Wilderness Area. The total White Rocks National Recreation Area lies within the towns of Dorset, Peru, Mt. Tabor, Wallingford, Mt. Holly, and Weston. The 21,480-acre Breadloaf Wilderness is the largest wilderness on the Green Mountain National Forest. The 3,740-acre Bristol Cliffs Wilderness has no designated trails. The few rough footpaths leading into Bristol Cliffs soon fade away. Aitken Wilderness has no designated trails. This Wilderness sits on a plateau above 2,300 feet in elevation. Lye Brook Wilderness offers lakes, streams, and bogs which are scattered throughout its heavily forested 15,680-acre landscape.
The Forest has numerous scenic auto tours. On the north half of the Forest look for Brandon Gap, Bingo Road, the Robert Frost Memorial Drive, Texas Falls Recreation Area and the White River area. On the south half of the Forest, look for the Kelley Stand Road, Danby Road, State Road #9, and the Somersett Road. These roads and areas offer scenery and recreation opportunities.
The Green Mountain receives ample snow for winter recreation activities. Sugarbush, Mount Snow and Bromley are three ski areas on the Forest. Killington is also located not far from the Forest.
Recreation - The Green Mountain National Forest is a four season (some say six with mud and Black Fly season) recreation experience. The most popular season is autumn when the mountains are ablaze with color. Summer is popular for camping, hiking, backpacking, fishing and canoeing. Winter brings out skiers (both downhill and cross-country), snowboarders, snowmobilers, and snowshoe enthusiasts. In Spring, the Forest bursts forth from the grip of Winter with emerging leaves on the trees, migrating birds, and blooming wildflowers that are visible along many of the Forest trails. The first fishing days are enjoyed by a lot of people. Mud season is usually short but intense. Mountain biking and hiking on wet trails is not encouraged during this time. Veils and an effective insect repellent are suggested for Black Fly season.
Climate - This area experiences four distinct seasons. Winters can be very cold, with plenty of snow for winter recreation activities. Spring and autumn are transitional periods, with normally mild temperatures but occasional seasonal fluctuations. The area is renowned for its spectacular autumn colors. Summers bring mild to warm temperatures.
The Green Mountain National Forest is divided into two separate sections. One section is in central Vermont and the other in southern Vermont. The Forest Headquarters is located in Rutland, with Forest offices also in Manchester, Rochester and Middlebury.