A Hike Up Burnt Rock Mountain

It's fall, and that means it's also Vermont season! In my opinion, this time of year is perfect for the Green Mountains. There are grand views to the Adirondacks and White Mountains from most areas on the Long Trail, and this time of year renders little haze. I figured the best peak to start the season off with was Burnt Rock Mountain, near Camel's Hump. The sky was clear, the temperature was cool, and the views were quite impressive.

Burnt Rock Mountain from a farmhouse.

My dad and I arrived at the trailhead very early, and the temperature was low enough to see our own breath. The trail immediately began with crossing Shepard Brook, even though it's called Hedgehog Brook Trail. The crossing is easy.

Looking down the brook.

The trail went in and out of logging cuts, and crosses a brook. Only then did it begin the incline, which wasn't bad at all. The steepest segment lied right before the Long Trail, and it included a few wooden steps.

Arriving at the Long Trail.

Once at the Long Trail, we followed it north toward Burnt Rock Mountain. The trail soon dropped into a crevasse, which was very cold. After that, the trail climbed steeply up to the first ledge.

The Long Trail through the crevasse.
Looking south toward Mt.Ellen.

The Long Trail here was skillfully constructed, as it cleverly utilized the rock notches and scrambles to create scenic switchbacks. Next, the trail pops up onto a ledge with a view up the bald summit ridge.

The view toward the Northeast Kingdom.

After some more scenery, we arrived at the summit. There is a pleasant view to the east and south, along with a small peek north toward the Worcester Range. Other peaks that can be seen include Burke Mountain, Signal Mountain, Mt.Lafayette, Killington Peak and Mt.Ellen.

The peaks of Groton State Forest. The White Mountains can be seen behind them.

When you get here, don't miss the herd path heading to the western ledge. This is quite the impressive viewpoint.The Adirondack are clearly visible, along with Lake Champlain. Peaks that can be seen include Lyon Mountain, Mt.Whiteface, Giant Mountain, Algonquin Peak, Dix Mountain, Gore Mountain, and Black Mountain.

The Adirondacks can be seen in the distance. Lake Champlain is peeking out from beneath the clouds.
A closer look at the high peaks. Mt.Whiteface is all the way to the right.

The views are probably some of the best in Vermont, and the range of peaks that can be seen are amazing. There's also a unique view of Camel's Hump from here. It was so clear I could make out people on top.

Camel's Hump, to the left of Mt.Ira Allen.

We met several thru-hikers who were also going over Camel's Hump that day. It is worth mentioning that on the way down there were a ton of people, so if you're going to do this mountain, get up there early.

The three distant peaks to the left are Killington, Pico and Mendon.
Looking toward the summit, with Mt.Ira Allen and Mt.Ethan Allen visible.
The trail straddles this rock.
A closer look at Camel's Hump.
Mt.Ellen from the western ledge.
A closer look at Mt.Whiteface and Lake Champlain.
The Worcester Range can be seen behind the hill.
On the summit.
Burnt Rock Mountain is well worth a climb. It ended up being a tad over five miles, and the trail never got that difficult. The peak may be overshadowed by nearby Camel's Hump, but there are still a lot of people up there during the second half of the day. If you want an introduction to Vermont hiking, then Burnt Rock Mountain is a good place to start.

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