The Long Trail, traversing the length of Vermont from the Massachusetts-Vermont line to the Canadian border, is the oldest long-distance hiking trail in America.
This 272 mile footpath is not a cakewalk. It may begin that way, but the climbs over 4000 footers like Mt. Mansfield, with its tricky “chin,” are steep and taxing.
I hiked the Long Trail the year after doing the A.T. and remember saying to myself it should be easy. Ha! Parts of the last third of this trail were as strenuous as anything I found on the A.T., including the Mahoosucs in Maine.
The Long Trail is a fabulous hike with rugged surroundings and beautiful scenery. Go in autumn when the leaves start to turn, and pack your camera. You will meet other hikers camping at the rustic shelters. You will find access roads to towns for resupply.
If you are planning to thru-hike, read from Long Trail journals at www.trailjournals.com And make sure to buy the Long Trail Guide.
For a good review of what it’s like to hike the Long Trail, I recommend the book The Ordinary Adventurer—Hiking Vermont’s Long Trail, by Jan Leitschuh.