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Appalachian Trail Section Spotlight: Vermont (Bennington to Manchester Center)

This post is meant to be supplemental information for my video on YouTube highlighting this particular section of trail.

General Notes for this video & section:

  • All mile markers are from the 2015 AT Guide, but distances from one point to another within this section should be relatively the same each year.  You can check out the AT Guide here: Also, the Guthook’s App is useful. Take a look at it here:
  • “Trail North” – means heading towards Mount Katahdin, ME on the trails instead of “Trail South” which is heading towards Springer Mountain, GA. The trail obviously isn’t always pointed due North and it’s easier when on trail to make this distinction. Trail West simply means “to the left” if you are heading Trail North when you intersect another road and Trail East is to the right. I hope that isn’t too confusing. You will notice that the AT Guide is laid out this way.
  • General Vicinity of Highlighted Section: About 3/4 of the way up the AT in near Bennington, VT and Manchester Center, VT.
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Section Spotlight General Area


  • Distance of Proposed Stretch:  40.1 miles one-way
    • Can be split into 2 smaller (~20 mile) sections – see “exits” listed below
    • There is an opportunity for a 7.6 mile (round-trip) day hike


  • Entrances/Exits (See Maps Below for More Detail):
    • Mile 1611.0: VT 9 (Parking Available) – About 5 miles east of Bennington, VT
    • Mile 1631.6: USFS 71 (Parking Available) – Gravel road
    • Mile 1633.6: Stratton Arlington Rd/ Kelly Stand Road (Parking Available) – Gravel road
      • This is the “exit” you would take for the day hike up to Stratton Mountain Lookout Tower & the gondola ride.
    • Mile 1651.1: VT 11 & 30 (Parking Available) – About 5-6 miles east of Manchester Center, VT


First Entrance – Aerial Photo


First Entrance – Map View


Second Entrance – Aerial Photo (Can’t see parking area, but parking is available.)


Second Entrance – Map View


Third Entrance – Aerial Photo (Park here to do the day 7.6 day hike to Stratton Mountain Lookout Tower and the gondola ride.)


Third Entrance – Map View (Park here to do the day 7.6 day hike to Stratton Mountain Lookout Tower and the gondola ride.)


Fourth Entrance – Aerial Photo


Fourth Entrance – Map View


  • Hostels & Lodging
    • Bennington:
      • Autumn Inn Motel – 924 Main St, Woodford, VT 05201 – (802) 447-7625
      • Best Western – 220 Northside Dr, Bennington, VT 05201 – (802) 442-6311
      • Hampton Inn – 51 Hannaford Square, Bennington, VT 05201 – (802) 440-9862
    • Manchester Center:
      • Green Mountain House – 2480 Richville Rd, Manchester Center, VT 05255 – (802) 768-8088


  • Shelters/Campsites (All shelters have water sources and sleep at least 8 people.)
    • Mile 1612.6 – Melville Nauheim Shelter (only shelter in this stretch with no privy.)
    • Mile 1621.1 – Goddard Shelter
    • Mile 1625.4 – Kid Gore Shelter
    • Mile 1630.0 – Story Spring Shelter (this would be the last shelter in the first 20 mile section if you were to split it up.)
    • Mile 1633.6 – Camping Area trail north of gravel road (Stratton Arlington Road – aka Exit 3).
    • Mile 1640.4 – Stratton Pond Shelter
    • Mile 1645.3 – William B. Douglas Shelter
    • Mile 1648.3 – Spruce Peak Shelter


  • Sights to See:
    • Mile 1621.4 – Glastenbury Mountain Lookout Tower
    • Mile 1637.4 – Stratton Mountain Lookout Tower (where Benton MacKaye’s vision of the AT began).
      • Potential free gondola ride – take 1 mile trail from summit to the Stratton Mountain Resort
    • Mile 1640.6 – Stratton Pond (would be a great swimming hole in the summer!)
    • Mile 1646.2 – Prospect Rock


  • Original Blog Post Covering This Section (during my 2015 thru-hike):
Jessica Mills
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8 Discussion to this post

  1. John Archer says:

    Thank you so much Dixie for once again taking time away from your incredibly busy life to post this update! I stand by my previous statement. Your post and especially your book should be required reading/watching for ANYONE contemplating hiking the A.T.

  2. michael says:

    My wife and I did our first overnight hiking last summer. We choose this exact section of trail. I was wnderful. We met several thru hikers, and us being us we brought too much food. SO we made lot’s of hikers happy be just handing out bags or Sorkable, and Mountain House meals. We had the best time, and it made us catch the hiking bug.

  3. Ted says:

    Excellent suggested hike, Dixie. As someone who lives in Vermont I can attest that this is a very beautiful section of trail.
    About 20 years ago, the day before he began 5th grade, I took my son for a day hike up Mt. Moosilauke in NH. At the summit we met an older gent who was section hiking the AT. He said he wanted to finish the Whites and Maine while he was in his 70s; that way he could tackle the “easy” sections like NJ, NY, and CT later, in his 80s. I received a very inspiring message that day, from a guy who was roughly twice my age. Now, watching your videos, I am inspired again — this time by a lovely lass who is roughly half my age. Keep up the great work!

  4. John says:

    Hiked this area in the 90’s with my son. Danby to North Adams,we went in August and met thru -hikers l remember Sratton Pond and Goddard shelter (great view),but the hike tore me up,Took up canoe camping. BWCA beautiful country and closer to home.
    Good luck on the PCT

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