Top 9 Hiking Trails Near Middlebury, Vermont

View from the top of Snake Mountain
View from the top of Snake Mountain

Nestled within the picturesque town of Middlebury, Vermont, an array of local hiking trails awaits enthusiasts and beginners alike. Just a stone’s throw away from the historic Swift House Inn, these trails blend New England’s natural beauty and Middlebury’s rich heritage. Whether it’s the rustling leaves underfoot, the gentle songs of native birds, or the breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes, Middlebury’s hiking trails promise a serene and invigorating escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life. For those staying at or visiting the Swift House Inn, the nearby trails present a delightful opportunity to immerse oneself in Vermont’s unparalleled charm.

BEGINNER

Trail Around Middlebury (TAM) Middlebury, VT –  Walking distance or 5 Minutes Away 

The TAM is an 18-mile-long footpath that links hundreds of acres of town land around Middlebury. With various small and long trail sections, there is something for every ability and trails are open year-round. Start easy on the Jeffrey Murdock Nature Preserve trail (0.6 miles) and visit a small cave on the north end, or see the variety of waterfowl, muskrats, and birds along the Johnson Trail (0.8 miles). Try the Chipman Hill trail (2.5 miles) for something a bit longer and enjoy the view 360 feet above downtown Middlebury. With multiple starting spots along the way, you can combine many sections of trail to experience hiking trails near Middlebury, Vermont. Check them out here

Snake MountainAddison, VT – 5.4 Miles – 20 Minutes Away

Located in Addison, Snake Mountain is a quick drive from Swift House Inn and a popular hiking trail near Middlebury, Vermont. A network of walking trails crisscross the mountain, reaching an elevation of 1,287 feet. The trail leading to the peak is broad and easy to navigate, offering a leisurely and enjoyable hike for visitors of all skill levels. The breathtaking view of Lake Champlain from the summit is a perfect backdrop for a relaxing picnic.

*Hunting is permitted in the area seasonally, so be sure you and your pets are wearing blaze orange during hunting season.

Brilyea Damn Trail – Addison, VT – 3.5 Miles – 25 Minutes Away

Start at the Deadcreek WMA entrance on Brilyea Road and explore this 3.5-mile out-and-back flat walking trail. This trail is a birders’ paradise. Many types of birds can be spotted here – marshbirds, shorebirds, hawks, owls, woodpeckers, and songbirds frequent this area. The birds are most abundant during the spring and fall and, as with all birding, sunrise and sunset are the best times to visit this hiking trail near Middlebury, VT. 

*Hunting is permitted in the area seasonally, so be sure you and your pets are wearing blaze orange during hunting season

View of Lake Champlain from the top of Mt.Philo.
View from the top of Mt.Philo

INTERMEDIATE

Bristol Ledges – Bristol, VT – 1.9 Miles – 15 Minutes Away

Head out on this 1.9-mile out-and-back trail Generally considered a moderately challenging route. This trail is great for hiking and running and is not heavily trafficked. Dogs are welcome but must be on a leash.

Mt Philo – Charlotte, VT – ¾ Mile – 34 Minutes Away 

Explore Vermont’s oldest state park and take in breathtaking views of Lake Champlain and the Adirondack Mountains. While relatively short, the trail encompasses a steep ascent of 650 feet, so be sure to bring plenty of water. The trail is a favorite for hikers, kids, dogs, and picnickers, with the option to hike up a wooded trail or paved access road for a hike near Middlebury, VT.  

Silver Lake Trail  – Salisbury, VT – 5.3 Miles –  20 Minutes Away

A moderately causal loop trail that begins from Route 53/Lake Dunmore Road. Start by hiking uphill about a mile to the Falls of Lana. This is a great place to stop and enjoy the 100-foot waterfall featuring two back-to-back horsetail-style falls. From March to August some years, the trail to the cliffs is closed to protect Peregrine Falcons. Once you arrive at the lake, head around the perimeter in either direction. Traveling counterclockwise brings you along the western shores of the pond before heading through the Silver Lake Campground and passing through a picnic area before returning to the road. Once you arrive at the lake, you can head in either direction Silver Lake is peaceful and popular with hikers, bird watchers, and horseback riders. 

View from the peak of Mt. Abraham
View from the top of Mt.Abe

ADVANCED

Snowbowl to Worth Mountain – Hancock, VT – 4.8 Miles – 25 Minutes Away

To access the trailhead and parking, head past the Middlebury Snowbowl for about a mile and look for a pull-off on your right. This trail is accessible year-round, but especially great for Fall sunrises during peak foliage. When you come to the first break from the woods you are in an open space that’s great to watch the sunrise from, but if you keep going through the short wooded continuation of the trail, you’ll reach the upper chairlift. During the off-season, the chairlift is normally stopped just on top so that you can sit on the chair to watch the sunrise. On your way back down try to find the detour that takes you to Pleiad Lake! Or, if you are short on time, head here from the start and then straight back down for 1 mile out and back 

Mt. AbrahamLincoln, VT – 5.1 miles – 35 Minutes Away

The trail begins from Lincoln Gap and follows the Long Trail up to Mount Abraham, Vermont’s fifth-highest peak. A beautiful & diverse hike to the top with fewer crowds and a rewarding view. Mt. Abe is best hiked from May to October but can be hiked outside these months with the suggestion of spikes. The summit boasts 360-degree views of the Green Mountains, the White Mountains, and the Adirondacks, along with Lake Champlain. On the way up you will pass the Battell Shelter which is a great spot to stop and rest. Make sure to bring lots of layers as it can be quite windy at the top.

SEASONAL ROAD CLOSURE: Roads leading to this trailhead are subject to seasonal closure from mid-October to mid-May. For more information, please visit https://lincolnvermont.org/highway.

Mount Moosamaloo Trail From Lake Dunmore Salisbury, VT – 5.8 Miles – 20 Minutes Away 

Explore this challenging 5.8-mile out-and-back trail starting at Lake Dunmore State Park. 

Embark on a scenic hike to reach the majestic summit of Mt. Moosalamoo and the North Vista. The Oak Ridge Trail is your gateway to this natural wonder, and it will lead you 0.4 miles to the southern side, where you’ll encounter a 500-foot side trail. Follow this trail, and you’ll be rewarded with breathtaking views from the North Vista. But that’s not all! If you continue south on the Oak Ridge Trail for an additional 0.2 miles, you’ll reach the South Vista, where you can enjoy more extensive views to the east. The estimated time for this round trip averages around 4-5 hours, so make sure you’ve packed enough water and snacks to fuel your journey.

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Wendy Vann says

Looking forward to visiting end of November and hoping to explore all
Middlebury has to offer

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