Posts

Showing posts from October, 2016

Guest Blog: Remote Camping at Woods Island State Park

Image
-By Matt Parsons
Woods Island is a remote Vermont State Park situated in the northern part of Lake Champlain near St. Albans, Vt. The island is a mile long and a quarter mile wide. There is no ferry service. With only five campsites, this 125 acre park, with 2 miles of shoreline allowed me to have all the privacy I could ever want. ( if I was willing to work for it ). There is something appealing to me about camping primitively on an island. The work involved is often rewarded by good views and the ability to detach from the riggers of life. There is a sense of peace and freedom knowing that there is nobody around. In 2008 I bought a 18 foot aluminum canoe from a friend of a friend. It is a dinosaur! I wanted to find things that my kids and I could do together. The kids and I made several reconnaissance missions to Woods before planning our camping trip on July 4th weekend 2009.
Site #4, on the very southern tip was always the most appealing to me. In my mind it is the most scenic. I e…

Stone Hut on Mt. Mansfield Set to Re-open December 1, 2016

Image
Lottery, with some changes, to be held November 16th
Near the top of Mount Mansfield, reconstruction of the historic Stone Hut is nearing completion. Barring any last minute construction issues, the Hut will be open to overnight guests again starting December 1, 2016.
The hut was closed to visitors after a fire on Christmas Eve, 2015, destroyed most of the building.
Through the efforts of the Department of Forests, Parks & Recreation (FPR), and funding received through Vermont Parks Forever, the non-profit foundation supporting the parks, rebuilding the Stone Hut was fast-tracked so that visitors would be able to return this season.
“We are so grateful for the incredible outpouring of support,” said Michael Snyder, the commissioner of FPR. “Everywhere I went people would tell me about their special Stone Hut experiences. Then they would offer to help in any way they could, either by donating supplies or labor, or offering financial support. It was amazing – and a testament to its imp…

Fall parks hikes to beat the crowds

Image
Want to get out and enjoy the fall? Everyone loves Camel’s Hump and Mt. Mansfield this time of year, but our other parks trails need love too… and are less crowded. If you’ve experienced Vermont in the fall, you know that it’s hard to go wrong. Here are some suggestions for roads less taken. Also remember to be careful on the roads and when parking on trailheads... respect your surroundings and the folks who live there. 
If you have another fall hike to recommend, let us know!
Molly Stark State Park in Wallingford
After you’ve watched the colors of northern VT fade, head south and do it all again! A 1.7 mile hike takes you up Mt. Olga and back again. As a bonus, you can climb the fire tower to get great views of the mountains in three states: Vermont, New Hampshire and Massachusetts. If you want to do more hiking, the park is also adjacent to more trails at Hogback Mountain. You can camp at Molly Stark through Columbus Day weekend.
Emerald Lake State Park in East Dorset
This is anothe…

Vermont State Parks Inherits Beauty of Taconic Mountains Ramble

Image
Today, the Carson Davidson Revocable Trust Fund entrusted 204 acres of beloved property in Hubbardton to the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks, and Recreation as part of what will be Vermont’s newest state park. The Taconic Mountains Ramble park was the vision of Carson “Kit Davidson, who passed away this past Thursday at the age of 92. 

Long before he built a Japanese garden in the shadow of Hubbardton’s Mt. Zion, documentary filmmaker and author Carson “Kit” Davidson lived with his wife Mickie, a children’s book author, in the heart of Greenwich Village.
“This was in the 1960s,” said Davidson, “back when real people could still afford that.”
Both he and Mickie loved the downtown’s creative energy, but they wanted a summer escape north of the city. The couple had a specific vision for their land, one not easily fulfilled until a fortuitous trip to Vermont in November of 1966 after five years of searching.
“Climb on the midnight bus – I think I’ve found it,” said Kit Davidson i…

Vermont State Parks' Director Receives Prestigious National Award

Image
Craig Whipple, Director of Vermont State Parks, will be presented with the prestigious national “Legends” award by the American Academy for Park & Recreation Administration at an awards ceremony this week.
The Legends award is presented to distinguished leaders who have made outstanding contributions to the field of parks and recreation. Video interviews are conducted with each recipient, exploring their personal background, professional insights and philosophical beliefs and are made available to educate and inspire others working in parks and recreation administration. Only a few recipients are awarded each year, and Craig is only the third Vermonter ever to receive the award, joining Theresa Brungardt, Vermont’s first Director of Recreation, and Edward Koenemann, former State Park Director.
Whipple was nominated by Cindi Wight, Superintendent at Rutland Recreation and Parks Department. Wight explains, “Craig demonstrates exemplary leadership. He is a fantastic mediator and has …