Mt Mansfield, Views aplenty

Hikes, NE67, TripReport , , , , , , , , , , ,

I am so glad Kevin tried to invite me on his trip to Vermont.. again. Apparently I overlooked/missed a text during one of his previous trips to Vermont to collect another New England 67 summits. We completed plans to meet early for one of the nicer days on this holiday weekend to avoid some of the expected crowds. I almost regret deciding to meet at 3:15 AM, but after we were done, seeing the full parking and line of cars nearly .5 mile down the road made me feel better. This was a fun 10 mile loop including the features of the Mt Manfield ridge.
I’ll let the photos do the talking. The GPS track is attached below as well, if wanted.

Coming in from the west we stop to catch the sun glow behind Mt Mansfield
Some mileage details from the kiosk at the ranger cabin. We took Sunset Ridge up and Maple Ridge down with a side trip to the Adams Apple
The Sunset Ridge Trail head
Mt Mansfield kiosk
Some Indian pipe/ghost flower on the way up. It was slightly past its prime
One of the early views through the trees on the way up
On the west side, it was still dim causing a blurry pic of Kevin
We took a quick side trip to see a rock. I look at this as a .2 mile side trip. Kevin accurately accounts for the return trip.
A large fracture resulted in a chunk pivoting out from the wall
I’m sure folks have tried to scale up there
Trees getting shorter opening up views west. The horizon showing New York’s Adirondacks
Kevin about a climb some ledge between the scrub
The views are coming, looking south-southwest
Where’s Waldo?
A look toward the chin of Mt Mansfield. The sunlight warming up but not yet over the ridge
We catch the sun cresting the ridge
Kevin, it’s not in focus
Sun glare over the krumholtz
Fragile arctic vegetation abound, careful where you step
A bit of under cast settling in Jeffersonville, VT
Cairn along the Sunset Ridge Trail
I snapped a few shots here, I liked the angle and framing
Kevin, the conqueror, looking toward the north
The sun creeping into the scene
Pensive Kevin ponders the cairn strucure
The backlighting from the sun makes him look cut and paste into this scene
I don’t know what the ridge to the north of Sunset Ridge is , but it sure looked interesting.
Sneaking a peek into the gulf
Circling around the base of the chin cone taking care to avoid fragile vegetation
Motion selfie. Hands in pockets for warmth, it was just above 40 degrees for much of the morning
3.1 miles done, almost up the cone of the chin. The tip of this post is pointing to the Adirondacks Great Range (I believe).
Some fresh bog boards over the wet land leading to the trail up the cone
The west chin(in view) was closed off from exploring
Looking at Stowe Ski resort area
A couple sits on the summit marker, while Kevin works to capture a pic marking his accomplishment
Summit puddles
Just before 0900, the sun still low to get good shots east
Starting our trip ‘down’ to the Adam’s Apple, the bare’ish summit behind Kevin
A 15-20 foot chimney climb. There were some steep tricky spots along this descent, and subsequent ascent
Almost there
From the Adam’s Apple, looking back at the chin(we just came from) across the rest of the ridge, with Vermont’s other high peaks in the distance. Perhaps all 5 in view
Returning back, south on the Long Trail, back up the steeps to the chin
Kevin working his way up. Another couple just ahead
A few spots with some drops nearby
Kevin looking back over the Adam’s Apple
Back on the summit, looking west over the west chin
The ridge walk ahead
Yes, we’re covering a brief stretch of the Long Trail
I believe this is one of the ‘lips’
Looking south, passing the junction of Halfway House Trail. One of the options to return to the car. We were doing well and continued along the ridge
A glimpse of the nose
A couple utility road crossings up top
The visitor center, along with drive up lot educates those in the rare vegetation in these parts
I donated a bit less than the suggested amount
A few bits in the center
Flora and fauna of the alpine area
The visitor center could use a makeover
Continuing on the utility road
A brief cut of trail
Large communications building on top of the nose
The trail closed at the top of the road
Looking back to the chin, where we came from
Looking down toward the forehead with the other high peaks in view
Just off the utility road, we pick up the Long Trail again
The forehead is open summit, like much of the range. The bypass can be used to keep you protected
More amazing views over Lake Champlain and into New York
The forehead summit and where we part from the Long Trail
Remain cautious of the fragile plant life
Wonder which forehead is larger, think I won
A woman hiked up with her dachshund in her backpack. Here she is enjoying the views before heading down
Kevin starting the descent on Maple Ridge trail. This turned out to be quite steep with some ledgey scrambles
I was looking at my phone, Kevin woke me up to the trail ahead
Kevin slithering down this crack and across the slab. Follow the blue trail markers
Up, down, in, out of the woods. The Maple Ridge Trail meanders its way down the ledge ridge
Snapping one of the steep ledge sections. The woman, with dachshun in tow, photobombed
Just commit! About a 3 foot span over a 6-8 foot drop
More slab, careful navigation with decent traction
Continuing up, over, around, and down
Crossing some flats across the ridge to the other side before dropping down again
Still on our descent, Kevin turns and says “Who put this rock in our way?”
1.1 miles from the forehead, still making our way down the slabby scrambles. About .7 more of Maple Ridge trail before a walk on the CCC road. Another 2.5 miles the car.
The Maple Ridge trail turned out to be fun. Ended in the woods with some lush greens. The majority of the trail was ledge, including in the lower woods.
The CCC road is not what we expected. Looks like a long carriage/rail trail
Deep green mosses cover this controlled falls
A cut in the trees open to a view west
Returning to the kiosk, from the other side
Close enough to make a side trip. My first trip to the Ben and Jerry’s Factory. We didn’t tour, but did partake in a scoop

Mt Mansfield via Sunset Ridge up and Maple Ridge down – gpx file

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