Pedaling Green Mountain National Forest
Beginners will love this 3.5-mile ride. It gains only 400 feet in elevation, mostly at the start, which may seem challenging, but hang in therethe rest of the ride is worth it. You will come to an open meadow and the Blueberry Management Area, where wild blueberries grow in abundance. The view to the east, of Romance Mountain, is stunning. The course returns you to the woods and gently back to the start, all on cross-country ski trails.
Notes on the trail: Beginning at the bike shop, cross the road and ride to the back of the inn on the left side of the building. Pick up the cross-country ski trail at trail marker 1. Climb the ski trail to trail marker 7 and turn right. Follow this trail, which becomes level, out to the blueberry meadow. Stay on the trail and drop down to a dirt road. You might have to get off your bike to negotiate the trench on theedge of the road. Turn left and follow the road briefly, looking for trail marker 25, where you reenter the woods. Stay left at every opportunity until trail marker 7, where you retrace your steps back to the inn.
Genral Area Information
General location: Halfway between Ripton and Goshen onFR 32 (also known as the Goshen-Ripton Road).
Elevation change: Elevation gains range from 300 to 1500' perride.
Season: June through October; late July and early August areblueberry picking times.
Services: Rudimentary services are available in Ripton, most at Blueberry Hill Inn; nothing is available in Goshen.
Hazards: The ski trails are well maintained and basically free of natural hazards. The trails in the Green Mountain National Forest are shared with hikers and horses. Keep an eye out for them, share the trail, and respect others.
Rescue index: At times you may be 4 miles from a phone.
Land status: Green Mountain National Forest roads and trails, VAST trails, cross-country ski trails, hiking trails, and dirt roads.
Maps: The best map is the Blueberry Hill Trail Map, which can be purchased at the inn for $2. Other maps depicting the area are USGS 7.5 minute quads, Brandon and East Middlebury, and the locally produced Moosalamoo trail map.
Finding the trails: All rides begin and end at Blueberry Hill Inn, located on the Goshen Road, halfway between Ripton on VT 125 and Goshen on VT 73.
Sources of additional information: For more information on dining, lodging, and mountain bike riding at Blueberry Hill Inn, write or call the Blueberry Hill Inn, Goshen Road, Goshen, VT 05733; (802) 247-6735. Or visit their Web site at http://www.blueberryhillinn.com. Green Mountain Bikesruns the bike shop and rentals at Blueberry Hill; its complete retail shopis located in Rochester (802-767-4464). There is also a bike shop in Middlebury,Bike & Ski Touring Center (802-388-6666).
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Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication