2024 Appalachian Trail – Day 0 – Planning & Driving

Monday – 17 June

This LASH (Long A$$ Section Hike) is set to cover nearly 230 miles over three exciting weeks from Cornwall Bridge, CT to Killington, VT. Bob and I have been eagerly planning this section, which continues where we left off during our last LASH in 2022. Scheduling was an enjoyable challenge as we coordinated around weddings, anniversaries, and Father’s Day. Despite our careful planning, a last-minute twist emerged. In early May, I received a jury duty summons for June! Following the instructions on the notice, I requested a delay and was slightly anxious about asking for both June and July off. Fortunately, I quickly received a response, moving my jury date to August, giving me something to look forward to upon my return.

The logistics of our hikes as we get farther away is an added challenge. For this section, Bob and I decided we would meet at the end point in Vermont, stay overnight at the Inn at Long Trail and then drive one vehicle to our start at Cornwall Bridge. It is an eight plus hour drive for me and six plus hours for Bob to Vermont. Our drive from the Inn to Cornwall Bridge will be three plus hours.

I had previously stayed at the Inn at Long Trail completing my section south from the White Mountains in New Hampshire also in 2022. Completion of this section will connect my Appalachian Trail hiking from the start in Georgia to Pinkham Notch, New Hampshire nearly 1,900 miles.

After nine hours, I finally arrived at the Inn. No issues with traffic. Bob arrived shortly after me a little before four. I gave Bob a short tour of the inn. It has a quite eclectic collection of knick nacks.

After settling into the room, Bob hadn’t done enough driving so we drove a few miles to Woodstock, VT and then back for dinner at the Irish pub.

Breakfast is at 7:30 and then we head south 3+ hours to Connecticut and start hiking in the heat.

History of The Inn at Long Trail

The Long Trail Lodge itself was conceived by Mortimer R. Proctor as a clubhouse for the Green Mt. Club. He had it designed by Paul Thayer, of Wallingford, and placed along the Long Trail for the convenience of the GMC members, who cleared and maintained the trail. The lodge was built in 1923, on the south side of route 4 atop the Sherburne Pass, convenient to guests traveling from either side of Vermont. A fire completely destroyed it during a blizzard, Nov. 8 1968. The front page of the New York Times carried the story as the loss of a significant part of Vermont’s History.

Following the fire, all of the lodging and dining activities shifted to the “Long Trail Chalet” on the north side of Route 4, the winter annex for the uninsulated Long Trail Lodge. The annex building was the first building erected in Vermont, 1938, to serve as a public ski lodge, catering to the early skiers traveling to Pico Peak Ski Resort, just down the road. The name “Long Trail Lodge” shifted as well.

In July 1977 Kyran & Rosemary McGrath purchased the lodge renaming it “The Inn at Long Trail”, and created “McGrath’s Irish Pub”, the first in Vermont to serve Guinness on draft.

In the land of lush green, where mountains stand tall,
There’s a trail winding through, calling one and all.
With each step you take, through forest and glen,
Adventure awaits, oh, where will it end?
– ChatGPT

3 Comments Add yours

  1. Steve aka Wedding Walker says:

    Remembering a great evening at the Inn at Long Trail a couple years ago with you, Sidequest, Digger and Juice. Enjoy your hike!

  2. Diane Olexa says:

    Hydrate!!! Hot week.😓

    1. stoffa says:

      Planning to go slow and lots of water.

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