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Top 10 Hikes in Vermont for Summer and Fall

Don’t pass up on the first-rate hiking trails that the beautiful Green Mountain State has to offer. Hikers, nature lovers, and outdoor enthusiasts will want to try out these top 10 hiking trails in Vermont.

By: The Outbound Collective + Save to a List

Vermont, also called the Green Mountain State, is best known for its beautiful foliage, top-notch ski resorts, and quaint towns. By population, it’s the second smallest state in the US, but is adorned with mountainous terrain that makes it a prime spot for attracting a multitude of hikers. All outdoor enthusiasts and hikers of all skill levels should take advantage of Vermont’s natural beauty and landscape. Especially as summer comes to a close, there’s nothing that quite beats hiking in Vermont in September, before the season changes. 

1. Mt. Mansfield

Hike up Vermont’s highest mountain. The summit offers sweeping views of the surrounding area, and the trail offers more than 2 miles of ridge-top hiking above the treeline. This hike is unique because it’s one of only two places in Vermont where rare arctic alpine tundra can be found.

Photo: Shannon Kalahan

2. Mt. Pisgah

This trail features a mix of woodland and rocky terrain and is located near Burlington, Vermont. There are some steep sections, but you’ll be rewarded with views of Burke Mountain, the White Mountains, and Lake Willoughby along the way.

Photo: Antoine Coallier

3. Camel’s Hump

This is Vermont’s third highest peak. Located in the Green Mountain National Forest, this challenging trail has steep inclines and panoramic views of nearly every mountain in the surrounding area- Mount Mansfield to the North and Mount Washington to the East.

Photo: Shannon Kalahan

4. Mt. Philo

This trail is right by Charlotte, Vermont, and is popular all year round. Located within Mount Philo State Park, which became Vermont’s first State Park in 1924, this hike has stunning views of the Lake Champlain Valley and the Adirondack Mountains.

Photo: Benjamin G

5. Mt. Equinox

This hike has some of the most breathtaking views in the whole southern Green Mountain region. It ends with Lookout Rock which culminates in views of four states and the Vermont Valley.

Photo: Equinox Mountain

6. Bingham Falls

This quick and easy hike located near Stowe, Vermont leads to a set of free-flowing, cascading waterfalls. It’s a great hike for photography and for swimming in one of the refreshing swimming holes along the way. It's one of the most rewarding easy hikes in Vermont.

Photo: Lisa Groene

7. Mt. Hunger

Just a 45-minute drive from Burlington, this challenging out-and-back hike offers rewarding views and waterfalls along the way. Mount Hunger faces Mount Mansfield, which tends to be more crowded on its trails.

Photo: Delphine Beaumont

8. Snake Mountain Trail

Located near Vergennes, Vermont, Snake Mountain is a moderate hike that features beautiful wildflowers and has great views of the surrounding farmlands, Lake Champlain, and the Adirondacks. 

Note: Check for seasonal closures due to the weather (primarily during mud season) before doing this hike.

Photo: Bob Schatz

9. Smugglers’ Notch

Embark on one or more of the many hiking trails in Smugglers’ Notch State Park, especially during the fall when the foliage bursts with vibrant colors. The state park is lined with 1000-foot cliffs that are also great for bouldering and cave exploring.

Note: Historic Smugglers’ Notch Pass located on Route 108 between Stowe and Jeffersonville may be closed during the winter months anywhere from mid-October to mid-May. Motorcoaches, motorhomes, and commercial vehicles may not pass all year round.

Photo: Chris Mongeau

10. Hike to Owl’s Head Trail Overlook

This trail is located in Groton, Vermont, and is a relatively easy hike. There are two different approaches to the top, but both lead to excellent views of Lake Groton and Kettle Pond. Note that the Blue Trail is temporarily closed, but the Yellow Trail is still open and adds about half a mile distance to the hike for an added challenge. Also note that the dirt road up to the overlook is gated and is open only between 10am and sunset. Check for parking lot and gate closures beforehand to avoid unexpected track changes.

Photo: Shannon Kalahan

Cover Photo: Shannon Kalahan

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

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