Chasing the Peak in Vermont

randolph  046randolph  097Continuing on our leaf peeping quest, we headed to central Vermont.  Our plan was to “follow the fall south”.  The Lake Champagne campground in Randolph Center had beautifully manicured grounds and a lovely view of the mountains.

randolph  096randolph  061The weather was quite variable while we were in this area.   And one day the tail end of Tropical Storm Karen came through with monsoon like showers and strong winds.

But we also had several sunny days.randolph  060

randolph  043randolph  031On Saturday, we headed back to Montpelier, the capital of Vermont, for their farmers market.  This time we took Angel to the market which was another really good one.

Lots of organic produce, grass-fed beef, free-range chicken, more great cheeses and maple syrup and LOTS of varieties of apples.  And Angel got some nice roast beef – yum!randolph  033

randolph  052We toured around some more along the beautiful roads of Vermont and saw more charming covered bridges along the way.randolph  003randolph  025

And, of course, many scenic little towns along the way.  Each with at least one pretty little church.randolph  079randolph  073

 

randolph  068randolph  067Then more covered bridges.  It’s incredible how many of these bridges there are.

One local I met while she was photographing a bridge shared that this year Vermont has not had as many red trees as they normally have in this area – she said the red color was at about 75%.randolph  022

randolph  017The conditions needed in order for the most intense colors to be revealed include:  rain in the spring and summer (which she says they almost got too much of), then a series of clear, sunny days and cooler temperatures (night and/or day) in the fall.  This fall there has been quite a mix of cloudy and sunny days, and the weather has been warmer than usual.randolph  004randolph  044randolph  029randolph  009randolph  049randolph  013randolph  005randolph  056randolph  071randolph  012randolph  023randolph  015randolph  072

randolph  026With all of this farmland, there are many very interesting and rustic barn buildings around.randolph  006randolph  058randolph  057randolph  024randolph  059randolph  055

While Hector was photographing yet one more covered bridge, a bunch of cows appeared.  They are rotated from one field to another to maintain the fields and so the cows can always get some fresh grass.  The guy that was herding them called out to each cow (there were about 30) by their individual name!randolph  019randolph  020

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And, speaking of cows, we visited one more farm, Sugarbush Farm.  They make maple syrup as well as cheese.  There we learned quite a bit about the process of making maple syrup.randolph  011

randolph  094Vermont is the largest producer of maple syrup in the U.S.  Maple syrup is considered Vermont’s first agricultural harvest of the year and is considered “seed money” for many farmers who use the sale of their maple products to purchase seeds to plant when the weather warms up and help keep their farms going.

randolph  095The production of maple syrup is a sustainable activity and one that keeps the beautiful maple trees in the state – approximately 25% of the trees in Vermont are sugar maples.  Lucky for us since they are so beautiful in autumn.randolph  083

randolph  048randolph  047Vermont was the first state to pass a law to establish purity and quality regulations for maple syrup, and their syrup is 100% natural.

It takes four maple trees, at least 40 years old, to yield enough sap in six weeks (40 gallons) to produce one gallon of maple syrup.  No wonder it’s expensive!

Then on to another ski town,  Killington.

We brought Angel along, and stopped for a short hike down the Queechee Gorge on the way there.  It’s a smaller gorge but pretty scenic with lots of trees and fallen leaves along the way.randolph  062randolph  066randolph  064

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One more stop along the way was the town of Woodstock, which had some cute little shops.   Here we discovered the Vermont Flannel Co., which had nice quality flannel clothing.  I bought a robe to prepare for the colder weather we’re about to experience the next few weeks.  Very warm and furry.randolph  070randolph  069randolph  085randolph  087

Killington is a pretty large ski area (for Vermont).  The trees at the bottom were very pretty but the top was definitely post-peak.  Peak colors are very elusive.randolph  081

Killington was getting ready for the Killington Hay Festival to be held that weekend, yet another fall festival.   People from various businesses construct animals out of bales of hay to display in front of their storefronts.  There were some pretty elaborate ones.

While driving around we stumbled upon a wedding inside of a covered bridge!  There were people on both sides directing traffic and asking cars to drive by as slowly and quietly as possible.  What a romantic idea to have a wedding in a covered bridge.randolph  054

Next, Southern Vermont.

At this time, we’re in Kentucky headed towards Denver via Kansas City, and catching up on blog posts.

~ Brendarandolph  053

8 thoughts on “Chasing the Peak in Vermont

  1. Is that Hector in his New England overalls at the Suga Ridge Farm booth of maple syrup at the Montpelier Farmers’ Market, or just an unczanny wanna-look-like-Hector imposter?

  2. What absolutely gorgeous foliage:) So glad there was that much color while you were there. Love the covered bridges! Clever having a wedding in one.

    Angel is so cute with the fall branch:)

  3. Gosh, seeing your beautiful photos sure makes me miss the Northeast. I sooo love it there. Thanks for sharing your adventures yet again, dear ones! And see you soon!!

  4. Lovely!!! Too bad the timing isn’t better — Kayla’s rugby team plays its league championship in VT this Sat!! You could have been part of the Skyhawk cheering section! Lovely shots… blessed life you live! See you soon. Stay safe. Jean

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