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Showing posts from June, 2011

Fireworks Are Booming at a Park Near You!

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Celebrate Independence Day in the traditional way - watching fireworks!

Many of the state parks are celebrating with special programs or later operating hours. Check out when and where there are celebrations near you, below!

Sunday, July 3rd - Mt. Ascutney State Park: One of the few parks left with camping spaces!! Make your reservation soon (802-674-2060) to camp.  Then just drive up to mountain road to check out the fireworks! Get a great view from on top of the mountain and see multiple fireworks displays. Be sure to bring a flashlight for finding your way back to your campsite if you are hiking. For drivers, the road will close 20 minutes after the finale.

Saturday, July 2nd - Boulder Beach State Park: If you are camping in the Groton State Forest, make sure to head over to Boulder Beach for this great celebration! Free entry after 7:30pm.

Saturday, July 2nd - Brighton State Park: Island Pond puts on a celebration after dusk which can be seen from the state park. Come early to get …

Intern Ellie at Woodford and Molly Stark State Parks

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One of the greatest things about camping in Vermont State Parks is meeting other friendly people. I have met people with many adventure stories about their travels and I have learned about some places I would really enjoy visiting in my future travels.

I spent quite a bit of time at Woodford State Park (and other parks as part of my invasive species research internship). While there, I saw another loon! At night, I heard a barred owl right above my tent site. The loons and owls together make such awesome vocal melodies.

This past weekend my family visited from New York for Fathers Day with their new puppy (seen above by my shoe). We went to the lake in Woodford and had a great time kayaking, hiking, and playing Pictionary in my tent just like we used to do when we were kids. There was plenty of laughter, great weather, and delicious campfire cooked food.

A few days later, I arrived in Molly Stark State Park where I took the Mt. Olga trail to see the fire tower where you see mountains f…

FREE Park Entry at Elmore State Park This Saturday as We Celebrate the Grand Re-opening of the Historic Elmore Beach House

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Everything Old is New Again:  Join us in Celebrating the Grand Re-opening of the Historic Elmore Beach House
Vermont State Parks, Waterbury, Vermont, June 20, 2011 If you happened to find yourself along the shores of Lake Elmore in 1936, you likely would have witnessed a crew of boys from the Civilian Conservation Corps hand-sawing local wood and sorting away at native stone as they built the original beach house at the newly created Elmore State Park.
Seventy-five years later, with only a few interior changes since the CCC first built it, that original beach house has been completely restored to its former glory, with the historic feel preserved and modern features added to accommodate today’s visitors.

Come see it for yourself, first hand, and join us on Saturday, June 25th to celebrate the dedication of the Elmore beach house to the next seventy-five years of enjoyment and recreation for all Vermonters and their visitors:
Saturday, June 25, 2011 
9:00AM Park opens – FREE park entry al…

Intern Ellie: Starting Fires, Loons and Raspberry Honey

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Let it be known that today, Sunday, June 12th I have built a fire outdoors with damp firewood. This is my first fire starting ever. It took more fire starters then probably acceptable for a boy scout but I needed a fire to dry off my long socks, the two pairs of shoes I brought and my warmest sweatshirt so I was persistent. The wood was sizzling, foaming and dripping water from the end of its logs for a long time and for quite a while the wood was just some coals and then all of a sudden it became a lasting fire and I kept running back to the car to get more things to dry off. It's so nice to have these articles of clothing back. When your outside everything somehow gets wet. I wanted to have a dog when I went camping but my loyal car which I call Siddhartha is just like one. It travels with me as a companion, it protects me, and smells like a wet dog. I don't know if that means I smell dog like but I try to keep it under control.

This weekend was great even with the rainy day…

Intern Ellie's Excellent Adventure: Coolidge State Park

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I have been living in Vermont State Parks for a week now and it has been awesome. I am taking pictures for Invasive Species Research and various other subjects for the state parks. Everyone who I have met working for the parks are very friendly. So far I have seen many chipmunks, red squirrels, newts, garter snakes, turtles and one skunk.

My favorite campsite so far has been the Ash lean-to in Coolidge State Park. There you overlook the green mountains and it looks like they go on for an eternity. Branbury is a great park with the beautiful falls of Lana and crystal clear lake to lounge or swim in. I am really looking forward to the rest of the summer exploring new places and finding myself in various adventures for the rest of the summer.

-Ellie

New Intern Ellie Stover Makes Small Things Big

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Currently, a junior majoring in Biomedical Photographic Communications at the Rochester Institute of Technology, Ellie Stover is into Macrophotography. Basically, she takes pictures of microscopic things, like cells and creates images that we can see.

Born and raised in Middletown, New York, Ellie has lived in New York all her life; however, she’s been lucky enough to do some traveling all over the world. From New Zealand to Europe to across the U.S., Ellie has been aware of and interested in the natural world around her, which lead her to taking certain courses at RIT and choosing her major. GIS mapping and remote sensing are two fields involving her background that Ellie feels will be used to survey invasive species in the future. She explained that certain plants radiate a unique infared signature which can distinguish them from other plants. Using this technology, huge areas could be surveyed accurately, showing where invasive species have the greatest density.

For her degree, El…

FREE Park Day Entry This Weekend!

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The Annual Vermont Days Celebration is this weekend, June 11-12th. Free day entry into any Vermont State Park, free fishing on Saturday, June 11 (no fishing license required that day!), and free entry into any Vermont Historic Site are some of the many perks of the weekend.

Check out the events page for a full listing of what's happening in the parks - VINS Raptor Encounter programs, music, treasure hunts, loon watch boating, arts and crafts, nature hikes, birding, and many other fun events are being held in specific parks. If you are still looking for things to do, try completing a few Venture Vermont challenges and play your way towards earning the big prize.

Take some time to explore a few hiking trails and get some of the best views of Vermont. Many of the trails have incredible summit views. On a clear day, you can see for miles! Great summit trails include Mt. Mansfield out of Underhill or Smugglers' Notch State Park, Rattlesnake Point out of Branbury State Park, Deer Leap…

Will You Take the Motorcycle Challenge This Summer?

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This challenge is for you, if you ride a motorcycle or scooter and want to explore Vermont this summer!

Green Mountain Harley-Davidson has teamed up with Vermont State Parks to offer The Vermont State Parks Motorcycle Challenge. Participants will receive four day passes to any Vermont State Park to get them on their way. In addition, each park picture along your journey is entered into drawings for prizes held at the end of the riding season. These prizes include a stay at the Canterbury House Bed & Breakfast in Woodstock VT, Motorcycle Services, Vermont State Park camping passes, Green Mountain Harley-Davidson gift cards, and more. The first 10 riders to visit all 45 parks will be entered into a special drawing for a $100 gift card. All challengers who visit the 45 parks before the deadline, will receive a special award certificate. The contest is open to motorcycles and scooters of all makes and models.

From now until September, riders are challenged with cruising to 45 or more of…

Saturday June 4 is National Trails Day - Here are some great trail resources to help you get out there!

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Its looking like perfect hiking weather for National Trails Days this Saturday!

Check out our favorite hiking links below:

Our favorite parks for hiking:
Top 5 Parks for Hiking

Looking to get kids out hiking for the first time?
Check out Family-Friendly Hikes

Want to hike with your dog? Here is what you need to know:  Pets in the Parks

Did you know there are a bunch of Trail Maps and Guides online that you can download? Check out our Publications Page

Want to climb some of the most popular summits in Vermont? Check out hiking maps for Camel's Hump, West Side of Mount Mansfield, East Side of Mount Mansfield and Mount Ascutney?

How about a beautiful, quiet nature trail? See our guide to Nature Trails

New to hiking?  Learn about Hiking Safety Tips

You also might want to check out some friends of ours:

Green Mountain Club, for Long Trail and its side trails

Local Motion, for trails of all kinds

Moosalamoo National Recreation Area for many trails in the Green Mountain National Forest area …