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The Stowe Recreation Path encapsulates the best parts of Vermont mountain life. During summer the vegetation is lush and green, and the nearby West Branch Little River keeps the trail cool and provides excellent fishing and swimming opportunities. In the winter, the trail gives visitors a reason to go outside and explore the elements, and the views of snowcapped peaks are more than photo-worthy.
Trail users can enjoy this out-and-back path in either direction, but most people start at the northern segment because it’s all downhill from there! The northern trailhead also lies approximately 3 miles south of the base of the world-class Stowe Mountain Resort.
The first several miles of gently sloping trail travel through the forested banks of the West Branch Little River and provide opportunities for quiet enjoyment in a rural atmosphere. Be on the lookout for wildlife along the trail; as you travel south, you’ll quickly pass a horse farm where horses often graze by the side of the trail, and lucky recreationists may even get to see a moose feeding in the distance. Portable restrooms, benches, and picnic tables are provided at a series of smaller parking lots along the trail.
After 2.5 miles, the trail crosses under Luce Hill Road, where development becomes denser and the trail more popular. A variety of restaurants, breweries, and lodging line the trail from here until the trail’s end in Stowe Village. Several of these establishments have created doors with direct access points from the trail to welcome in trail users.
Given the popularity of this trail, Stowe prioritizes clearing snow and ice from the Stowe Recreation Path in the winter for year-round use. You can still enjoy snowshoeing and cross-country skiing in the snow along the sides of the trail. A free shuttle during the winter months transports trail users up the mountain for a one-way trip back down.
To reach the northern trailhead from I-89, take Exit 10 for SR 100 and head north on SR 100 toward Stowe. Go 9.8 miles, and turn left onto SR 108 N. Go 4.3 miles, and turn left onto Brook Road. The parking lot is on the left in 400 feet.
To get to the southern trailhead in Stowe from I-89, take Exit 10 onto SR 100. Follow SR 100 N toward Stowe 10 miles, where the entrance to the Stowe Recreation Path parking lot will be in Lintilhac Park on the left next to Stowe Community Church.
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