Skiing and snowboarding are two ways to get through Vermont's long winters but there are dozens of other things you can do to enjoy the season. A growing number of enthusiasts are digging in to the sport of ice climbing
Rock Climbing can be an intimidating sport for many people. But with the proper training it can be an exhilarating experience. There is a sense of accomplishment when scaling what you thought was impossible. It can be a real confidence booster, and its lessons can be applied to everyday life. Host Marianne Eaton attends the Petra Cliffs Rock Climbing Center in Burlington and then tackles a sixty-foot cliff high above Lake Dunmore in Salisbury with her teachers.
Orienteering is the sport of using nothing but a compass and map to locate points on a course that has been laid out in the woods. Competitors race the clock to locate the checkpoints, and then return to the starting point. It can be competitive or just a nice walk in the woods. It's a sport that is popular throughout the world. Host Marianne Eaton joins members of the Green Mountain Orienteering Club on one of their outings and navigates her way through the wilderness.
The backwoods ponds and mountain streams of Vermont can be the perfect place to fish for native trout. They may require a little effort to get there, but compared to the larger lakes and rivers these bodies of water can provide a relatively untapped resource for anglers. Host Lawrence Pyne and author Peter Shea hike the Long Trail to get to Little Rock Pond in search of "brookies."
- The Fly Rod Shop
- GORP - Fishing Page
- The Green Mountain Club
- Orvis Endorsed Fishing Trips
- Orvis Fly Fishing School
To many it may appear impossible to comprehend a climb up a sheer wall of ice in the winter. But thanks to advances in technology, this sport is now more accessible than ever. For many ice climbers, mastering the mental and physical challenges associated with this sport is what makes it attractive. Ice climbing requires a person to be completely in synch with the environment and to understand how the changing weather conditions affect the terrain being climbed. For those that attack the physical and mental challenges of this sport, there is a special sense of accomplishment and feeling of being one with nature. Host Marianne Eaton joins Austin Paulson of Peak Expeditions for a day on the ice in Smuggler's Notch.
Llamas are members of the camel family. Like their smaller relative, the alpaca, they are domesticated animals, bred for thousands of years in South America as beasts of burden. Their fur is used for a number of purposes, including clothing, rugs and rope. But it is their reputation as legendary pack animals that has made the llama a treasured institution in South America. Known as the "ship of the Andes," the llama has been a crucial part of the South American transportation system in mountainous regions. They have been part of religious ceremonies. Mummified llamas have been found entombed with their owners; tiny bronze llama sculptures have been found at various burial sites. They are strong, agile and gentle creatures that are able to bear large loads. Their hooves are much like that of a deer, which results in less trail damage than a packhorse or a mule. And they can be trained to follow and walk with you at your own pace, which makes them the ideal pack animal to take along on a hike. At the Northern Vermont Llama Company in North Waterville, you can do just that. They offer "llama treks" — a hike in the woods with trained llamas that carry all your picnic and hiking supplies for the day. All that's required is the ability to hold a leash and walk. Llamas are calm, curious animals that behave well with children. Lindsay Chandler, from Northern Vermont Llama Company, says they are easier to walk than dogs. "They walk the same speed as we do," she explains, "so if you're a hiker, it's the greatest animal to just walk with, because generally, they walk right along with you." Host Marianne Eaton joins Lindsay on a llama trek with a few friends and a big picnic lunch that she didn't have to carry.
- Northern Vermont Llama Co.
Geoff & Lindsay Chandler
766 Lapland Road
Waterville, VT 05492
- Stowe Llama Ranch
Chris and Linda Wood
2363 West Hill Road
Stowe, VT 05672
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