Mountain Guide: Summer in Southern Vermont

Alpine Life Jul 07, 2017

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Winter’s obviously our favorite season in southern Vermont, but the area offers a lot in the summer months as well. So much so that the Wall Street Journal recently outlined how to have a “discreetly fashionable getaway” in the area around Stratton, our home mountain, this summer. 

Generally, they got things spot on, but the following is our take on some of their recommendations and a few additions.

DO

Stand-Up Paddle Boarding
We like to keep to outdoor activities even once all the snow has melted away. There are some great spots for SUP (stand-up paddle boarding) from the Stratton Mountain Snowmaking Pond to Lowell Lake in Londonderry. You can rent a SUP board at First Run in Stratton Village.

Another option is mountain top yoga. A few years ago, Stratton built a yoga deck on the summit, which offers beautiful views while you Namaste away. As an annual host to the Wanderlust Festival, Stratton is making a name for itself as a yogi destination.

Although the long winter season and hilly terrain prevent Vermont from having world class golf, there are many high quality, reasonably priced golf courses with fairly thin crowds. The cooler summer temperatures in Vermont make a July or August Round quite enjoyable. We recommend the Stratton Golf Course, Okemo Valley Golf Club and The Golf Club at the Equinox. Be sure to check out special deals on weekday and twilight golf. Or for those looking to get into the game, Stratton has an excellent golf school.

If you need a break after all those activities, consider a relaxing cruise along the the Skyline Drive on Mt. Equinox.

EAT

Southern Vermont Food Snapshot

The delicious food & drink clockwise left to right: Burger at Honeypie, Fiery Ginger cocktail at the Homestyle Hostel, Earth Sky Time stand at the Wanderlust Festival, Ribeye at SoLo Farm & Table, and the Earth Sky Time roll at SoLo Farm & Table

I can’t speak highly enough of SoLo Farm & Table. Refined, interesting takes on local ingredients in a charming setting. It’s always a pleasant experience dining there. If you’re looking to indulge your inner child (or a real child) a little, roadside spot Honeypie on Route 30, also from the SoLo owners, offers delicious burgers and “dogs” and soft serve from the Northeast Kingdom.

In Ludlow, near Okemo, the Homestyle Hostel serves up great small plates in a comfortably quirky setting. Think Brooklyn in Vermont. The cocktails can’t be missed here. I recommend the Fiery Ginger, as I’m an individual with the same characteristics.

Two other spots to call out not mentioned in The Journal are Earth Sky Time Community Farm and Up for Breakfast both in Manchester. Earth Sky Time is a small organic farm and wood fired bakery. Their breads are amazing (SoLo Farm & Table agrees -- they’re a purveyor). My favorite is the whole wheat Voonder Bread, which is luckily also available down the road from Stratton at the Winhall Market. They also host weekly al-fresco vegetarian dinners during the summer months.

Up for Breakfast, on the other hand, is a great greasy spoon, obviously only open for breakfast, and perfect after a strenuous morning hike or SUP session. Pro-tip: it's cash-only!

STAY

You can’t go wrong with either the newly opened Taconic or stalwart Equinox in Manchester.

If you prefer to be closer to the mountain, check out some of these rentals we discovered, the Solstice Luxury 5-Bedroom Ski/Ski Out Home or a 4 Bed/4 Bath at Rising Bear.

So get out of the city and come check out our neck of the woods!

Comments? Questions? Reach out to me at sara@orsden.com
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