Boondocking, Free Camping, Off the Beaten Path, Travel, Vermont

Off the Beaten Path … in Vermont

As full-time RV’ers we travel and see a lot. This is part of our Opting Out of Normal series where we explore the “Off the Beaten Path” of every state. We love the big popular stuff like everyone else, but there is just something incredible about discovering something unique, different and maybe a little “off the beaten path”. We certainly can’t explore them all, but we’d love you to include your favorites below too. We love to “Opt Out of Normal”. Each series will include at least 1 epic boondocking area, complete with pictures and GPS coordinates. 

Aside from the really fun Ben & Jerry’s Flavor Graveyard, and the worlds tallest filing cabinet in the world, there are even more amazing, cool and unique places in Vermont. So many to choose from, but here are our favorite picks. 

Floating Bridge of Brookfield

I wouldn’t say go too far out of your way, but if you’re driving near Brookfield, we recommend this. It was closed to car traffic from 2009 to 2015 and has now been reopened. Either way, you can walk or dive it (unfortunately, the floating bridge occasionally sinks). The bridge, which is the only floating bridge east of the Mississippi River, was originally built in 1820. 

Floating Bridgeme

Got Chocolate? Lake Champlain Chocolates is a family owned business since 1983. Chocolate tastings are available weekends with tasting guides, where guests can sample four chocolate profiles. YUM!

hunt gorgemeHuntington Gorge – During the summer I would say this is probably boarder line “unique and off the beaten path” but if you are lucky enough to catch this amazing place in spring or Fall, do it. This is one of the most dangerous places, because of it’s beauty, people get very distracted. Please! Be careful, watch your step and then enjoy the beautiful strange rock formations. On the sad side, there has been so many deaths here, they call it The Hungry Gorge. huntgorge2meThere are many different places you can stop to view this incredible gorge. Dugway Rd, Richmond, VT 05477. It has so many angles and facets to view. The rocks here are perhaps the best example of water sculpture in the state.

 

warrenfalls2meWarren Falls – Warren, VT. Another incredible view of Vermonts different and unique sculptured rocks. Another very busy summer area, but if you can get there during the Fall you won’t regret it. 

Our Pick for KayaingLone Rock PointBurlington, VT. lonerockpointmeVery close to Burlington’s beautiful waterfront is Lone Rock Point. A kayakers destination for sure. Most people put in at North Beach (see attached from Google Earth). It’s a few minutes (not even a mile) over to reach Lone Rock. Screen Shot 2018-08-18 at 10.32.49 PMBut paddling farther north along the shoreline into Appletree Bay gives you some sights such as forested bluffs, Leddy Beach, and Appletree Point. Don’t miss these! 

Vermont is known for being the most amazing place in Fall. If you have a chance to visit Smugglers Cave (in Smugglers Cave State Park) it’s scenic, interesting history, and kind of eerie. Bring your bear spray. Vermont definitely has bears.  The cave is located about 60-feet from the scenic road (known as the Notch). The cave is easily missed, hence the reason why in the 1920’s it was used to illegally smuggle in goods. There is beautiful camping at the State Park. Unfortunately, it’s not free! We like to boondock, which gets us out and about from structured campgrounds. But if campgrounds are your preference, they have beautiful sites there. 

japgardenmeJapanese Garden in Hubbardton. You won’t likely stumble upon this spot in Hubbardton by accident. While it’s known to the locals, it’s easily passed over. It is a privately owned property open to the public year-round whose centerpiece is a Japanese garden. Kit Davidson passed away on September 29, 2016. The preserve is now managed by Alyssa Bennett. Address is 321 St. John Rd, Hubbardton, VT. GPS location: N43°41.099, W73°08.538.

A Perfect beautiful short drive – Green Mountain Byway – 11 Miles – Along with beautiful scenery, a large variety of attractions for all ages. Ben & Jerry’s ice cream factory, Cold Hollow Cider Mill, and Vermont Ski Museum.

If you’ve never been to Historic Jericho, and you love taking pictures, this is such an amazing town. The old Grist Mill in Jericho is amazing. old-mill-489971_1920

And … our most unique place we would NEVER go. Knight’s Spider Web Farm. Stacy is deathly, and ridiculously afraid of spiders! This would be such a huge challenge! Two garage-sized barns are packed with wooden frames, built in grids, hanging from the spiderwebfarmceiling. These square frames are ideal spots for spider webs, and the abundant orb-weaver spiders (typing this give me chills Ha Ha) that live on Knight’s farm make themselves at home. Actual spider webs are used to make his one of a kind artwork and he’s a great story teller to keep your attention from beginning to end. Maybe I could at least just visit the retail store of his unique art. Might have to try it! This pictures are not mine. Haven’t been courageous to visit yet! 

Boondocking Suggestions:  National Forest Rd 71 – Any size, easy access // GPS: 43.060964, -72.987425 / 14 day max stay. Seriously, look this place up if you’re needing to do anything in the surrounding areas. GPS

Chittenden, Vermont GPS: 43.78686, -072.87901 Super easy to get to and some great hikes and dirt biking trails. Turn west off of route 100, once you past Knight Hill you should start to see campsites on both sides of the road. Sites are of all shapes and sizes.

Remember to always, pack it in, pack it out! And above all, Live Simply, Give More, Expect Less. 

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