The days are getting longer and the sun is higher and the smell of spring is in the air. The woods and hiking are calling out to us.

BUT it is mud season and the trails with frost still in the ground are particularly fragile. Hiking boots going through the mud on top of the frost do more damage to the trail than the hundreds of boots in the summer and fall. The mud tends to temp folks to hike to sides, widening the trail and damaging vegetation on the sides of trails.

Find the low elevation trails that lose the frost early and dry out early.

Some suggestions in our area:

The lower mountain trails in Equinox Preservation Trust in Manchester Village – maps available at the kiosks at the trail heads or on line – for more information 

The West River Trail in South Londonderry and Jamaica – maps available on line

Lye Brook Falls trail from Manchester to Lye Brook Falls – information available at the USFS Manchester Ranger Station or in the Green Mountain Club “The Walker’s Guide to Vermont”

Prospect Rock via the Rootville Rd in Manchester – information in the GMC “The Walker’s Guide to Vermont”