Boasting the lowest population density of any State on the eastern seaboard, Vermont is a hidden gem for cyclists and nature lovers alike. Enjoy the green mountain forests, pristine rivers, and rolling hills as you cycle along Vermont’s quiet gravel roads. This 6-day tour will give you a taste of everything Vermont has to offer; and we aren’t just talking about maple syrup.
What You’ll Love
Simply put, Vermont has the best low traffic roads in the country. Drivers are polite and there is a strong cycling and outdoors culture. As we cross the state and pass through idyllic small towns, you will get a taste of classic New England living. Climb to the summit of Mount Mansfield, taste at the plethora of craft breweries, and soak in the welcoming nature of long-time Vermonters. This tour also boasts some of the best meal options we have on offer. From Mad Taco to wood-fired Folino’s pizza to local cheese and apple cider, Vermont does not disappoint when it comes to food! The Vermonter truly has something for everyone and will make you want to come back to the Green Mountain State year after year.
The Night Before
Riders will settle in at the Doubletree by Hilton on the east side of Burlington. Enjoy a day in Burlington and hit some of the highlights before setting off on our grand adventure. Meet us at Weird Window Brewing for a get-to-know-us drink! These will be the people you’ll spend the next 6 days touring with, so the bonding starts now. We will have a beer (or whatever you prefer) and get excited about the epic trip awaiting us. Don’t stay up too late, because we will have an early start in the morning!
Day 1 – 48 miles – 3,740 feet of climbing: Day 1 starts with some gentle riding out of Burlington and into the country. We will utilize the cross Vermont trail and some excellent gravel roads on our way to Waterbury. There we will have lunch at the exceptional Prohibition Pig brewery and restaurant. If you’d like to grab some beers to go or from the shop across the street we are happy to drive them to camp for you. We continue up to Smuggler’s Notch and our cozy campground. Smugglers Notch, aptly named for the history of smuggling leading up to the war of 1812, is a gem for hiking and outdoor activities in the shadow of Mount Mansfield.
Day 2 – No Riding Day: The second day of our trip will be an off-bike day in the Smugglers Notch area. The group will hike up to the summit of Mount Mansfield, the tallest mountain in Vermont! On a clear day there is no better view in the whole state. After the hike, the group will have a free afternoon where you can do more hiking or pop down to the nearby town of Stowe which has several excellent breweries, eateries, and shops.
Day 3 – 23 miles – 1,824 feet of climbing: With one of the gentler elevation profiles, Day 3 should be a more laid-back day. We will ride back through Stowe and then Morrisville on our way to our campground at Lake Elmore. There we will have a chance to play on the water a bit with our rented kayaks, canoes, and paddleboards. Get your legs ready because the next few days are a bit more challenging!
Day 4 – 55 miles – 2,770 feet of climbing: Day 4 takes us on parts of the Lower Vermont Rail Trail and Cross Vermont Trail on our way to the Capital of Vermont, Montpelier. As we follow the Winooski River we will ride through small towns like Cabot, the namesake of the famous Cabot Cheese! Tonight we sleep comfy in a soft bed at the Capitol Plaza Hotel. Riders are free to explore the Vermont Historical Society Museum, Capitol Building, and numerous local restaurants in the area. You won’t want to miss our big group dinner at the Three Penny Taproom; our guides’ choice for the best meal on the trip.
Day 5 – 42 miles – 3,650 feet of climbing: Get ready for the best riding of the trip! The first half of the day is tame as we wind along the Mad River. Lunchtime features the infamous MAD TACOS as the group fuels up for our biggest challenge yet. After we hit the town of Warren, the road starts to climb as we tackle Lincoln Pass. This gravel mountain will test your legs as we hit gradients as high as 20%! A quick descent will take us to our campground where you can put your feet up and relax by the fire or play some campground games. Keep your appetite for our famous s’mores to cap off our last night of adventure.
Day 6 – 42 miles – 2,705 feet of climbing: Our final day on tour takes us back to Burlington. You’ll want to soak in all the gravel and gentle terrain as our route winds its way through farmland and forest. Our last lunch will be at Fiddlehead Brewing and Folino’s Pizza. A beer and a pie will set you right for our final dash back to where we started. Well, maybe a stop off at Sister’s of Anarchy ice cream will set you up for the final dash, but who’s counting?