News Releases

April 19, 2017

Mud Season is Here

Hikers Are Asked to Avoid Muddy Hiking Trails

The Green Mountain Club (GMC), maintainer of Vermont's Long Trail and Vermont's hiking trails advocate, along with the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation (FPR), manager of State Forests and Parks, and the Green Mountain National Forest (GMNF) announce the return of Mud Season to the Green Mountains.

Some trails, especially those at high elevations, are closed at this time of year. Please respect the signage you see. Snowmelt and rain will cause the trails to remain wet, muddy, and prone to erosion. Hikers walking on saturated soils or on the sides of trails cause damage to surrounding vegetation, widen trails, and inhibit natural drainage of our beloved hiking trails.

"It can take hours for a volunteer or trail crew to fix what takes just moments to damage by hiking on muddy trails," says Jessica Savage, FPR's Recreation Program Manager. "In a way, each footstep on a muddy trail makes extra work for people who are needed for other major projects on trails. We know the sunshine makes getting outside a priority, but saving your mountain hikes until the trails are dried out will ensure a better, longer hiking season for all."

Dry trails at lower elevations, dirt roads, and recreation paths provide excellent opportunities for spring outdoors activities. A weekly trail update with the latest conditions and a list of alternative hikes will be posted on the Vermont State Parks website at: http://vtstateparks.com/hiking.html#mudSeasonHiking.

"Please give the trails time to dry out for the summer hiking season," says Dave Hardy, Director of Trail Programs for the Green Mountain Club. "Until the end of May, consider hiking on south facing slopes and lower elevations where the sun can dry out the trails sooner. And thank you for taking care of the trails!"

The Green Mountain Club, the Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation, and the Green Mountain National Forest thank hikers for their cooperation in helping to maintain one of Vermont's finest recreational resources, our hiking trails.

For information on mud season hiking, call the Green Mountain Club's Visitor Center at 802-244-7037 or email gmc@greenmountainclub.org, or call the Vermont State Parks Call Center at 1-888-409-7579 Monday through Friday, 9am-4pm.

Media Contacts: Jessica Savage, Dept. of Forests, Parks and Recreation, 802-249-1230; Kristin McLane, Green Mountain Club, 802-244-7037

Source: Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation
Last Updated at: April 19, 2017 12:45:09