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Hiking in Vermont

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Most people probably equate Vermont with winter ski vacations and no doubt, the Green Mountain state definitely has some awesome resorts/mountains for that - I've been many times to Mt. Snow, Okemo and Killington and loved every slope I've skied down and every trail I've snowmobiled on but there's nothing quite like New England in the summer time.

There's no better place to celebrate the brilliance of summer or the beauty of changing seasons than Vermont's Champlain Valley and Green Mountains. But travelers shouldn't sleep on the Green Mountain State—with its beautiful foliage, resplendent ski resorts, quaint hamlets, and delicious food, this New England gem has something for everyone.

One of the most accessible—and geologically distinctive—points on the Long Trail is Smuggler's Notch, a nine-mile drive northwest from Stowe, the town best known for its ski resort, on Route 108, through the Green Mountains.

Despite the dominance of the skiing industry, Vermont offers so much more - beautiful trails come alive in autumn, the maple trees are tapped in the spring and the jazz festival fills the air with music in the summer. The historical architecture, central location and town square vibe make the corporate incursion more palatable, and there are plenty of local stores like Lake Champlain Chocolates, the throwback Burlington Records and the Vermont Flannel Company.

Year-round activities are ever present at Stowe Mountain Lodge, from skiing in the winter, to hiking and local swimming holes in the summer. Castle Hill Resort offers skiing packages for winter time travelers, however there are plenty of seasonal activities all year round from annual county fairs in Ludlow to antique shops and backgrounds tours. Whether seen under blankets of snow, patchworks of blazing fall leaves or the exuberant greens of spring and summer, Vermont's blend of bucolic farmland, mountains and picturesque small villages make it one of America's most appealing states.

Southern Vermont consists of a spread of cities and towns which serve as hubs for dining, shopping, skiing, and outdoor activities in the Green Mountains. Because of its beautiful, mountainous terrain, Vermont travel is most beloved by avid outdoors travelers who are seeking the perfect location for either hiking during the warmer months or skiing during the winter. Stowe is great for a day trip, but if you choose to stay there, it's an excellent option because of its proximity to the state parks mentioned above, as well as other lakes and mountains.

With ski resorts, incredible mountain peaks, lakes, countless hiking trails, and great homegrown food, you really can't go wrong with a visit to Vermont.