planning this weekend in vermont----coming from portland, me

Discuss Fall Foliage in Vermont, when to come, where to stay, where to take a tour etc. Note: You must be registered in order to post. If you have trouble registering, use the contact us form on Scenes of Vermont's home page.

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shush
Posts: 9
Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2009 8:44 am

planning this weekend in vermont----coming from portland, me

Post: # 10493Post shush
Thu Oct 15, 2009 11:01 am

Hello experts,

I'm new to the New England area and traveling to Vermont during foliage season has always been a dream of mine. And I finally get to do it this weekend!

I'm living in Portland, Maine right now and I'm looking to leave Saturday morning for Vermont. My main goal is to see scenery and take beautiful pictures. I'd be happy just driving around scenic byways and quaint towns but I don't want to drive more than 5 hours on Saturday as well as 5 hours back to Portland on Sunday. So far this is the route that I have come up with.

Please tell me if there's anything I can do to make it better! As I said, I don't know much about where to go and what to see but I want to make this a very pretty weekend.

Currently my path looks like this:
Portland to Lincoln, NH
Lincoln, NH to Craftsbury, VT
Craftsbury, VT to Stowe, VT (spending a night in Stowe)
Stowe, VT to Montpelier, VT
Montpelier, VT to Barre, VT
Barre, VT to Waits River, VT
Waits River, VT to Queechee, VT
Queechee, VT to Portland ME

The map on mapquest:

http://www.mapquest.com/maps?1c=Portla ... :EN:M:/e


Andy
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Post: # 10494Post Andy
Thu Oct 15, 2009 11:35 am

Shush: I'll let others correct me, but from what I have heard, you may have missed the foliage in the first 3/4 of the trip. I am not sure about Waits River (in my own experience, the leaves always seem to drop early on the background trees on this scene across the bridge to the barns and church. Also, I saw a shot taken last week, I believe, and there is "new lumber" construction on the bridge rails, which will detract from the photo. The shot you see on my site has been "photoshopped." There are power lines, gas cutoffs, and the roof on the house on the right is a fairly bright green these days.

At the same time, You can usually find some good, later color in East Orange, which is not far from Waits River, and sometimes in East Corinth and Peacham. All are within easy driving of Waits River (you could catch them on the way from Barre-Montpelier).

If you are a serious photographer, one challenge you will have is that Peacham, Waits River, and East Orange are all "afternoon" locations. In my view, Waits and East Orange and be done almost any time after the middle of the day. Peacham, however, really needs the late afternoon -- early evening sun. If you do it last, you will be furthest away from Queechee. The town of Peacham is pretty "magical." My shot is only one of several great views in and around the town. I'll leave it to you whether it is worth "waiting for."

If you just want to "see" these places, you could start with Peacham and end at Waits River or East Orange. I assume you will take 302 out of Barre to Vermont 25 South to Waits River (truly an "if you blink, you'll miss it destination). IWhile it will add some time to your drive, consider instead, going from Barre on 302 all the way to the town of Groton (its about 10 miles further). This will also take you along parts of the South end of the Groton State Forest (a nice drive if there is any foliage left). At the town of Groton, take Minard Hill Road North (left) about 8 miles. You will come into Peacham from the South. The Village Green and iconic buildings will be on your left. Turn left and head toward the town hall and just past it on the right will be the barn and then the fire station. Accross the road from the fire station is the cemetary which is spectacular. If you walk out into the field behind the fire station the scene I linked to will develop. If you go back down toward the Main Street (was Minard Hill Rd) and continue across it (looks like downhill, but quickly heads back up hill) and drive to the crest you will get another magnificent view of Peacham.

Then, head back to Groton the way you came. You now want to find Powder Spring Road (a right onto 305 and a quick left again, South). This will take you to East Topsham, and then eventually to East Corinth. When you have seen these areas, continue south to the intersection of Power Spring (in E. Topsham, I think it turns into Topsham-Corinth Road) and Vermont 25. It will be a "V" and there is a small store/gas station on the right. Make a right (54 or more correctly 135 degree turn back North) You get to Waits River and East Orange that way. Of course if you are dead set on getting a good Peacham Photo, it may work better to go the other direction. (there is a good shot of E. Corinth from the field behind the Masonic Temple, but it really is a "morning" shot).

Go to the Photography Forum and check the "sticky" on "Waits River Area" for more directions and details about the photo ops
Last edited by Andy on Thu Oct 15, 2009 5:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Andy

If it sounds too good to be true, its probably . . . .

4sneau
Posts: 38
Joined: Fri Oct 10, 2003 12:01 am
Location: Southern California

What about the Connecticut River Valley?

Post: # 10504Post 4sneau
Thu Oct 15, 2009 7:08 pm

I see that Shush is planning to drive from Peacham to Quechee on Route 91. That should take Shush along the Connecticut River Valley, which usually also has later color. I drove it a week ago, and it was still mostly green (along Route 5). Does anyone know what that looks like now?

shush
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Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2009 8:44 am

Post: # 10523Post shush
Fri Oct 16, 2009 12:27 pm

HAs anyone been to Craftsbury? Is it worth seeing or should I just skip it and spend more time in the other places?

Also, will there even be good foliage this weekend in these places? :(

Photosbyzen
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Post: # 10526Post Photosbyzen
Fri Oct 16, 2009 4:38 pm

Shush I too will be in Stowe on Sat will not be getting there until 1600 check in time at the lodge.
While your there may I suggest The Cactus Cafe for dinner, or Pie in the Sky for one of the best pizza's you'll ever have. Sunday morning you've got to have breakfast at The Gables on the mountain road. May be a little bit of a wait for it..but well worth it.
http://www.gablesinn.com/index.php?page=dining

Enjoy your time in the village.
Image


shush
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Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2009 8:44 am

Post: # 10541Post shush
Sat Oct 17, 2009 4:26 pm

Thanks for the suggestions!

I have just reached Stowe and I'm disappointed that I missed the peak foliage. Everything is pretty much gone here. :(

All I really got was what was left of the color in Peacham area.

I'll be headed back to Portland tomorrow and was wondering if anyone knew of a place on my way there that will still have some nice color.

I was planning on stopping in Craftsbury tomorrow but there may not be much there either.

I need help!

ctyanky
Board Admin
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Post: # 10542Post ctyanky
Sat Oct 17, 2009 4:49 pm

Do you have time to hit the other side of the state early before you head back?

The Champlain Valley should have good color along route 22A and 30 and along route 7 and 7A into Pownal. Check the final state report that Tim posted for the 15th on foliage-vermont.com. Click on the link at the very top of this page. The state report has some great recommendations for remaining color on many routes.

ixl will probably chime in soon.

bm lives in the Champlain Valley area and is also a great source for reports.
CT - Board Admin and Moderator for Scenes of Vermont
**************
Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns. ~George Eliot

shush
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Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2009 8:44 am

Post: # 10543Post shush
Sat Oct 17, 2009 6:08 pm

I would love to go further but I'm not gonna be able to have the time. So I was planning on heading from Stowe to Battleboro, and then onwards back to Portland. Someone told me that there's still some nice color left in Battleboro area. So I'm hopeful. Sadly, tomorrow looks like a rainy day.

shush
Posts: 9
Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2009 8:44 am

Post: # 10556Post shush
Sun Oct 18, 2009 2:56 pm

Thanks for all the tips, guys!

I'm back home now and have uploaded my pics. I felt that the trip was sort of a disappointment in that I didn't seem to be going to the right places to see color. Most of my pics are enhanced but for the most part, not too bad.

http://scenesofvermont.com/phpbb2/viewtopic.php?t=2213

Andy
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Post: # 10561Post Andy
Sun Oct 18, 2009 6:57 pm

Shush: I feel your pain. In 2005, I took my best buddy from here in MI to VT and spent months gushing about how he had never seen color like he was about to see. It was a BUST!. In 2006, it was "slightly" better but still not great.

I made 5 trips to the Michigan U.P over the years, with similar results. THEN, this past weekend, I made a last minute trip for 2 1/2 days and was REWARDED with the best color I have seen up there ever! Keep heart, and keep trying. VT WILL reward!!
Andy

If it sounds too good to be true, its probably . . . .

ctyanky
Board Admin
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Post: # 10576Post ctyanky
Mon Oct 19, 2009 5:30 am

shush: sorry about your foliage in VT this season. I had a similar experience one year. It was very disappointing. Perhaps you can return next year early in the season and head north; maybe the last weekend in September through the first week in October.

I try to be optomistic and in ending say, "There's always next year!" :wink:
CT - Board Admin and Moderator for Scenes of Vermont
**************
Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns. ~George Eliot

Andy
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Joined: Sun Sep 18, 2005 12:01 am
Location: Saginaw, Michigan
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Post: # 10579Post Andy
Mon Oct 19, 2009 8:44 am

I may be wrong. Pwt and BM can probaby give a better "feel" for this. BUT, it seems like it happened very fast this year and didn't really last as long as is has in years past. It was also as early as I remember it.

Interestingly, in contrast, I spent the weekend in the Michigan U.P. and it seems to have lasted better up there than in some past years, in spite of some strong winds and some dry conditions. Color was as fabulous up there as I have ever seen it.
Andy

If it sounds too good to be true, its probably . . . .

pwt54
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Post: # 10588Post pwt54
Mon Oct 19, 2009 9:29 am

Things were looking great up to the first weekend of October. Then we had that week of rotten weather with heavy rain and high winds right at peak foliage time. That weather stripped off the maple tree's red and orange leaves. Many areas went from pre-peak to post-peak in just a couple of days. There was plenty of yellow leaves, but very little red and orange leaves showing. This was a disappointing season for me and many others. I have seen quite a few other seasons like this and I can live with this because I live here and will see better seasons in the future. You travelers coming here for foliage season have a limited amount of time and money to find the best foliage and scenery. That is why I started answering questions on this forum.


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