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near Stevensville, Vermont (United States)
While I enjoyed the summit with the 360 degree views on our previous visit in 2013, it was probably my least favorite this time around. The main reason is due to the increase in popularity of hiking and the crowds at the summit. So unlike other hikes, what made our hike was the fun scrambling up the Laura Cowles trail and the view out west toward Lake Champlain on the aptly named sunset ridge trail. The former encompasses the boulders so common in the trails of the the northeast and the latter was on large granite slabs that made for a picturesque descent. The trail is well signed but there were some scrambling spots on the Laura Cowles trail. Even though not all of the Laura Cowles trail was scrambling, the hike involved hands aplenty to brace on the trees as you ascended. While not a long hike, plenty of endurance is needed for the quick elevation gain.Meanwhile you will most likely deal with whipping winds on the bad summit or the exposed descent on the Sunset Ridge Trail. If it raining, perhaps look to do this hike another day or you might be sharing the Profanity Trail.
For our full hike report, see https://travel2walk.com/2021/11/10/trip-report-vermont-mount-mansfield-october-10-2020/