Hoping to head to Vermont

Old Sep 29th, 2011, 03:25 PM
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Hoping to head to Vermont

My husband and I will be traveling to Hartford Conn. we arrive on the 19th until the 24th. We woould like to hit the raod and head towards Vermont , stop hear or there,
Any suggestions as to what route to take and where to stop ? Places to see as a must ?? Thanks in advance !
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Old Sep 29th, 2011, 03:26 PM
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Sorry, forgot to mention it will be in Oct. !
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Old Sep 29th, 2011, 06:23 PM
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You say you are 'traveling to Hartford' - do you mean you are flying into Hartford? Is there a purpose to your trip other than to see Vermont? Is there anything specific you are looking to do, or are you just hoping to see fall foliage?

Oct 19-24 will be quite a bit past peak in Vermont. In fact, the trees will probably be bare. I live an hour south of the Vermont border (in Mass) and by that time it's usually pretty much 'over' even down here. The mountainous areas of Vermont (and NH) will definitely be past.

So unless you are coming for some specific reason or event I would skip Vermont at that time. If you can't change your dates, and you are looking for pretty, fall New England, I would suggest you go to the coast. The Massachusetts coast (north shore is the best, Gloucester area) and even southern Maine (Portland and south) should still be pretty nice that week. I often go to those areas the weekend after Columbus Day, which is about when you are talking about. There is usually still some color.

To get to those areas from Hartford you would go through Sturbridge Mass which is worth a stop.
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Old Sep 29th, 2011, 06:26 PM
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Also, not to put a 'damper' on your trip, but this year has been incredibly wet in New England. Not only was there flooding from Hurricane Irene a month ago, but it's been raining A LOT ever since and a lot of the leaves are already down, and usually at this time of year things are just beginning to turn. In other words, this is NOT going to be a stellar year for fall color. So people coming to New England this fall I would advise to find something in addition to leaves to look at.
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Old Sep 29th, 2011, 07:09 PM
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Yes , we are flying into Hartford for a leisurely road trip . We planned this way before Irene unfortunately
And I know there has been much damage ., one of the reasons I posted here to get some feed back on what I should do and which route to take . We don't have to go to Vermont but would love to make sure we take some nice scenic routes .
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Old Sep 30th, 2011, 03:27 AM
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Since we live in NH, we tend not to drive around looking at the leaves. Vermont is a great area with what looks like less commercialization than most states. There is much more farming esp along Lake Champlain. We tend to visit with specific activities in mind plus we just like to drive around just seeing if there is anything to see.
You can visit the Vermont Country Store and farms that are open to the public on the wine and cheese trail.
Spend a day at Shelburne Museum.
Check the different farmers market websites for a vendor list. Brattleboro is one of the largest and managed to be back in shape the Sat after Irene even though the market area was a raging torrent on the Sunday before. From the vendor list I could see there were several options for ethnic food, a few crafts people, some selling wine or beer. It was a fun place to have lunch and shop. Very festive.
There are some specialty stores if you like to garden (Gardeners Supply in Burlington) or cook (King Arthur Flour in Norwich VT).
See what activities are happening at Billings Farm Museum.
Some towns have hay people or scarecrows on display.
Visit artist and crafts studios for some early Christmas shopping?
See what's happening on the weekend. In a town near us, a local farm invites people in on the Sunday before Halloween to carve pumpkins. Several hundred people turn out esp if the weather is nice. The farm crew guts the pumpkins and have them ready for carving. The resulting jack-o-lanterns are part of a wonderful display the farm puts on for Halloween.
Check bookstore websites in major towns for author readings. The independent store in Concord NH has someone almost every Thursday. I know Chris Bohjalian will be in Norwich on Oct 19 (he lives in VT).

The routes really depend on your interests. It could be a rainy week so you might want to alter your plans for indoor things to do (Shelburne Museum involves walking outdoors between buildings).
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Old Sep 30th, 2011, 11:59 AM
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Thank you very much for your suggestions. i will check the forcast a few days before and try to plan my route then and what to see.
I know it's been raining alot , something I hope I won't have when I go but it seems the color might be all gone by then...sigh
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Old Sep 30th, 2011, 06:07 PM
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Most years those dates it would be past peak in Vermont, but probably still pretty enough, especially in the southern part of the state. But we have had soooo much rain this year. It is absolutely pouring again as I write this. As I drove home a few hours ago I noticed a waterfall that is usually barely a trickle anytime past early Spring and it's like Niagra Falls - and now there's a 'river' that never even existed before! Seriously. I noticed that the trees have lost a LOT of leaves already, and the rest are a lame shade of yellow. Now, there is a little bit of brighter color, but not much. And we are an hour south of the Vermont border. I really think this year will be quite a disappointment.

That's why I'm suggesting you skip Vermont. Even though you are flying into Bradley, you can still get to the coast. The chances are there will be more color there the week of your trip plus there is much else to see that is not 'leaf dependent'. From Bradley to Boston is just a little over two hours and then Cape Ann is less than an hour further - Gloucester, Rockport, Hammond Castle, Salem (if you like Halloween and witches - but it will be crowded that week). And then the southern Maine Coast - York, Ogunquit, Kennebunkport, Portland. Then you could go back to Bradley via southern NH and southern Vt and down I-91 through western Mass. Northampton is a great town to stop for a few hours for lunch.
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