We decided to set a goal of trying to climb all of the highest peaks in the United States. Our first peak was the Chin (the profile of the mountain looks like a face) of Mount Mansfield in Vermont, which is 4,393 feet up. We drove up to to Vermont for Memorial Day weekend, the Saturday forecast called for passing showers we spent the day in Stowe at the farmers market and biking the Stowe Rec. Path. We finished our day with tasting spirits in Caledonia Spirits and experiencing small town life in Hardwick, VT.
The shortest route up the mountain to our first high point was via the Hell Brook Trail, which was 1.5 miles straight up. After chatting with a bunch of eager college kids from Vermont University, we decided to start the climb up the steep rocky path. The quintessential Vermont forest offered beautiful views of the bubbling brook and waterfalls; this trail was littered with cold caves, huge boulders, and rock walls. This hike required us to use all our limbs, often grabbing roots and boulders for support during this challenging climb through the beautiful maples, pines, and birches. We kept a steady pace, up the mountain, following close to the college kids, not too shabby for 34 and 28 years old. It was a perfect day and the view from the summit was clear and gorgeous. The cool breeze dried our sweaty foreheads as we stood at the top and gazed at the village of Stowe below. From the top of the Chin on Mount Mansfield, we took our first summit marker head shot and celebrated our climb while we surveyed the surrounding peaks and valleys. After tackling Hell Brook Trail up, we decided to take the Long Trail, following the switchbacks down the mountain. We celebrated with a drink and fell asleep soundly.
Before we headed home we wanted to see the Trapp Family Lodge and Amanda wanted to recreate “The Sound of Music.”