Bromley Mountain (3260 feet)
It was unseasonably warm today with sunny, hazy weather. I took the Long Trail north from Vermont Routes 11 & 30, 3.0 miles to the summit (elevation change: 1460 feet, average grade: 487 ft/mi). The parking lot at the trail head was large and marked with an obvious US Forest Service sign on the north side of the road. However, today it was very crowded; I was lucky to find a space when I arrived at 10:45 am. I'm sure the good weather had something to do with the popularity... that and the fact that it was possibly the last warm weekend of summer. The proximity to Manchester, Vermont, and southern New England in general, may have also been a factor. Almost all the cars were from out of state. On the good side, the people on the trail were all very polite and did a good job of social distancing (due to the ongoing pandemic of 2020). Most people put on masks as they walked by.
The trail was wide and well-worn all the way to the summit. It went over easy grades for the first couple of miles, about until it came to Bromley Shelter (down a spur trail). The grade then increased somewhat, although still not very steeply, until another short spur trail lead to an overlook. Not far above the overlook, the trail came to the top of one of the Bromley Mountain ski trails with open views. It followed the ski trail to the summit where a warming hut and other trappings of the ski area could be found. From the summit there were decent views in all directions.
I noticed that even at the summit, over 3000 feet, the forest was still largely hardwood (birch). In the more northerly parts of the state, for example on Worth Mountain where I hiked last weekend, the transition to a boreal forest occurs at around 3000 feet. Thus, there is a detectable difference in forestation from one end of the state to the other.
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