Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Fall Fun: I Love VT

A quick list of free associations and memories of my first foray into Vermont:

  • a beautiful welcome center with homemade baked goods to raise money for a food pantry--oh, the cider doughnuts and blueberry cobbler!
  • mountains, mountains, and more mountains
  • foliage--the mix of greens, yellows, oranges, reds, and deep red-purple always make me want to quilt
  • Vermont Country Store--I never knew it was real, thought it was just a catalog company for years.  But it's a big, real, quirky, nostalgic tourist draw (not quite a trap because the goods are mostly quality.)  Got a Shoot the Moon toy for the kids.  
  • Bryant House Restaurant--an old soda fountain, Johnnycakes that looked like corn muffins, Sis said they were the best fries ever
  • Maple Creemee--it's a maple soft serve with some chew, kinda like frozen custard
  • Mt Equinox--oh, my gosh, I went up a mountain.  Sure, we were in a car, but I didn't panic.  And I even sat sorta near the edge, contemplating time, life, and beauty.  Beautiful views, including a hawk soaring below us.  3,848 feet high.  The scent of balsam.
  • Inn at Long Trail--Lincoln logs come to life, with an Irish twist.  
  • Pop hiked Deer Leap Trail before we arrived, all the way to the ledge--scary!
  • Pop made the kids western juniper walking sticks! (And we only sword-played with them once.)
  • Quechee Gorge--we hiked about a mile, up and down beside the deep gorge.  I was impressed with myself (again.)  Thanks to Pop's loaner walking stick, I didn't eat dirt or sprain anything when I tripped on a rock.
  • VINS (Vermont Institute of Natural Studies)--raptors, including Snowy Owl!  Also Bald Eagles, Golden Eagles, Kestrels, Peregrine, Red Tail Hawk, Broad wing Hawk, Ferruginuous hawk, Great Grey Owl, Barred Owl,  Great Horned Owl, small Eastern Screech Owls, and two beak-locked ravens. Nice rehab center and tour of the enclosures.
  • Worthy Kitchen--introduced Gommie and Pop to poutine!
  • Sugarbush Farms--maple, cheese, and condiments tastings!  Mmmmmmmmm.   Sis loved the huge horses and the bunny
  • KING ARTHUR FLOUR--Bake for Good Month and tasty wheat bread, Sis got some mixes, just delightful, except they were out of the 13" Pullman Loaf pan I wanted and I never got through to order from customer service (we got there late in the day so there weren't many choices in the bakery, sad to say, but the chocolate chip cookies were good and the chai latte was excellent.)
  • Checkers, chess, pinball-like baseball game, more chess, more checkers--loved the game room at the Inn
  • meals at the restaurant--loved the Irish brown soda bread with raisins, Guinness stew, and the pancakes in the morning.  Sis liked the hot chocolate.
  • Maple syrup, creemee, ice cream, hard candies, lollipop, candle, bacon, fudge, butter . . . . 
  • live Irish music--I think my Aunt Sis would have loved this place (and its rustic charm)
  • beautiful morning sunrise--Bud very thoughtful ("Can you imagine living like this?  With the mountains and sunrise everyday??")
  • that lovely Vermont lake (Kent pond?) surrounded by mountains and foliage and dramatic clouds
  • Thundering Brook falls--an accessible hike to the waterfall and more reflections on science and geological time by Bud, plus a few steps on the Appalachian Trail
  • We see a Bald Eagle in a tree by the road!
  • Billings Farm Museum--new calf, huge draft horses, sheep, maple and pumpkin and caramel apple ice creams, a farm house with modern conveniences and a dairy.  Bud square dances with Gommie.
  • Lunchtime sandwiches from Woodstock Market, which we eat back in the Inn
  • I think I'd like Woodstock, not sure about Manchester, for our next visit
  • three covered bridges in the area, though I don't know what their names are.  We drove across a red one to get to Sugarbush.
  • Mama goes to VINS photography class--she got great pics!--and Vermont Flannel Store
  • I get the restaurant's soda bread recipe!
  • Oregon Trail game with everyone (Mama died by snake bite, Bud and I by dysentry, Gommie because she didn't have a coat, and Sis by typhoid fever.  Pop lived, even though he kept breaking the wagon.)
  • We don't watch the debate.
  • chilly night near freezing, felt good
  • more hiking on Long Trail/AT for Gommie, Pop and kids, on the bit across from the inn
  • how many games of chess and checkers did the kids play with the grandfolks?  It was a highlight.  Pop said it was no-holds-barred--and he did manage to beat them a few times.  I lost a lot.
  • another beautiful Vermont lake (Echo Lake), glittering and clear
  • a chainsaw art festival!  We got some owls
  • and lunch nibbles from the other Vermont Country Store on our way home--cheeses, Vermont common crackers, summer sausage, and maple nuggets (a whole lot like Buc-ee nuggets!)
What a wonderful weekend!

View from Mt Equinox

A tree at VCS

Inside the Inn at Long Trail

See, Lincoln Logs

Thundering Brook Fals

On Thundering Brook Falls Trail

More of the accessible trail

A lovely lake--Kent Pond, we think

Billings Farm Museum

Quechee Gorge

Echo Lake

Chainsaw art

1 comment:

  1. Excellent!!!!!
    So glad you had so many wonderful experiences in my favorite place.
    Next time let us know you're coming and we can get together?