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Closure Notice: The LVRT sustained serious damage during the July 2023 flooding. On October 21, AOT reopened the 6.4-mile segment between the Wolcott trailhead (near the Wolcott town offices) and the Hardwick Depot trailhead off Creamery Road. A total of 79.5 miles are now open.
The 14.7-mile section from the Hardwick trailhead to the Walden trailhead will remain FULLY CLOSED to all trail users until further notice and must not be accessed by the public.
The remaining closure is due to many different types of damage and includes long-term projects with repairs will likely not be completed until sometime in 2024.
Visit the Vermont Rail Trail System website for updates on status.
The Lamoille Valley Rail Trail (LVRT) is a year-round trail in northern Vermont that stretches 93 miles between St. Johnsbury and Swanton. The trail passes through the spine of Vermont’s Green Mountain Range, from the Connecticut River to Lake Champlain. Covering five counties and 18 towns, the LVRT is the longest rail-trails in New England. As of July 2023, the Lamoille Valley Rail Trail (LVRT) is complete and open to the public.
The rail-trail is built along the former route of the Lamoille Valley Railroad, which once served as a vital east–west transportation corridor from 1877 until its closing in 1994. The railroad was known as the covered bridge line and was a leaf peeper train for scenic tourism. The Vermont Association of Snow Travelers has supported the project for many years and helps to maintain the trail. The rail-trail's elevation grade never exceeds 3 percent, making it accessible to a variety of trail users.
Starting from the trail's southern endpoint in St. Johnsbury, the route offers a variety of scenic landscapes, including gorgeous wetlands and Joe’s Pond, a locally popular fishing, boating, and residential area. Heading north, the trail first parallels both US 5 and the Passumpsic River before turning west to run along Whiteman Brook. Tunnels help trail users avoid road crossings at US 5 and I-91 and also provide a cool spot in the warmer months. After heading under I-91 and reaching Mt. Vernon Street, you’ll enter a 1.5-mile section of the trail, also known as the Three Rivers Bike Path, which heads to the southern edge of St. Johnsbury, where you’ll find a small parking lot.
Beginning at Vermont Route 15 (VT-15), you’ll head northeast along Joe’s Pond, a gorgeous lake with a variety of activities available. Take a break at the Joe's Pond Trailhead and enjoy the scenic views over the water. This trailhead has restrooms, picnic tables and pavilion, benches, and a large sandy parking lot. Flanked by trees for most of the route, the trail passes through a small residential area near the intersection of VT-15 and US 2, just before the trail begins to run along the shore of Joe's Pond. Heading towards Danville, the trail snakes in and out of wooded areas and farm fields and crosses over a few local roads. You’ll encounter dramatic outcrops of bedrock—ledge cuts left over from the time of the railroad—as well as dense shaded forest and ferns in the warmer months.
Continuing northwest through West Danville and Walden, the trail begins paralleling the Lamoille River as it winds its way through Greensboro Bend and East Hardwick. The current 6-mile gap starts in Hardwick by the intersection of VT-15 (Grand Army of the Republic Highway) and Log Yard Drive. The trail picks up again along the Lamoille River in the woods. The closest access is from Elmore Pond Road, just south of its intersection with VT-15 (Grand Army of the Republic Highway). The trail continues to follow the river and VT-15 through Morrisville to Cambridge. The quiet route passes through a wide range of landscapes—from small towns to agricultural areas, meadows, and forests.
Heading northwest, you’ll pass through Morrisville only a block or two from downtown. Oxbow Park (257 Portland St) is located just off the trail in Morrisville and offers ample parking, restrooms, and drinking water. Beyond Morrisville and Hyde Park, you’ll continue through vast farmland and riverside areas—including Doghead Falls, a popular fishing access—and continues to Johnson. Here, Old Mill Park is home to a trailhead with parking, restrooms, and drinking water.
Continuing northwest, you’ll pass through vast open areas of farmland in Cambridge and eventually reach Cambridge Junction, where a seamless connection to the Cambridge Greenway heads toward Jeffersonville. This junction (Cambridge Junction) is marked by one of Vermont’s iconic covered bridges, the Cambridge Junction Bridge (also known as the Poland Covered Bridge), built in 1887. The junction also includes a restored train station, a railroad-themed community playground, restrooms, and picnic tables. Several small businesses, including cafés, ice cream shops, and breweries, have popped up throughout this section and cater to trail users.
The trail meanders its way north through Fairfield to reach Sheldon, where it connects with the Missisquoi Valley Rail Trail. Continuing northeast through Highgate to Swanton, the trail links up with the mile-long Swanton Recreation Path that runs to the Missisquoi River. The trail's northern endpoint is across the street from the Swanton Historical Society (58 S River St, Swanton).
The Green Mountain Transit (GMT) system provides access to the trail. It serves the communities of Burlington, Essex, South Burlington, Shelburne, Williston, Winooski, Milton, Hinesburg, and part of Colchester. Options include using the the Jeffersonville Commuter to access the trail in Jeffersonville from Burlington and the 116: Richford/St Albans Commuter route to access the trail in Sheldon. Commuter routes are limited to morning and late afternoon/early evening. Visit the GMT website to plan your adventure.
Rural Community Transportation (RCT) serves the counties of Caledonia, Orleans, Essex, and Lamoille, providing fare-free shuttle and commuter bus routes. Use the Jay-Lyn Shuttle to access the trail in St. Johnsbury from Lyndonville, the Route 100 Commuter between Morrisville and Waterbury, and the US2 Commuter to access the trail in St. Johnsbury from Montpelier.
In the mornings and late afternoons, it is possible use the 14/15 Commuter running between Hardwick and Morrisville in order to skip the current trail gap. In Hardwick, the bus stop is on Wolcott Street and about 0.4 miles from the trail. To reach the trail from the bus stop, head south on Wolcott Street and then east on West Church Street. Follow West Church Street as it turns south and then east on North Main Street. In Morrisville, the bus stop is outside the RCT Office and about 0.6 miles from the trail. To each the trail from the bus stop, head northwest on Harrel Street. Turn south to follow Historic VT-100 until it intersects with the trail.
According to the Ride RCT Guide, buses are equipped with a bike rack on the outside. However, riders are responsible for safely securing their own bikes. Bikes may also be brought onto the bus if the bike rack is full and the driver says it is safe to do so. Visit the RCT website for more information and to use their trip planner tool.
For those driving, parking is available at a number of locations along the trail. View the TrailLink map for all options and detailed directions.
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