August 20, 2014

Williston’s paths and trails

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Click on the map for a larger version. Map created by Williston Town Planner Jessica Andreoletti.

Click on the map for a larger version. Map created by Williston Town Planner Jessica Andreoletti.




Williston might be known for the big box stores and bustle of Taft Corners, but 75 percent of the town is rural. A system of primitive trails for hikers, cross-country skiers and mountain bikers winds through the town’s forests and farm fields, offering stunning vistas and quiet nature exploration. See pages 14-15 of the May 23 issue of the Williston Observer for a full-size map of the town’s trails. Maps and more information about the trails are available at the Town Hall and the town website, www.town.williston.vt.us.

Below are descriptions of each trail.

 

TRAILS-5TreeHill2

FIVE TREE HILL COUNTRY PARK

Walkers and skiers

Five Tree Hill, named for five large sugar maples near the overlook, offers the best vista in town—a panorama of Lake Champlain and the Adirondaks. The overlook is 1.3 miles from the parking lot on Sunset Hill Road. Five Tree Hill’s 57 acres includes vernal pools, several types of forest and animal habitats. It also runs along part of the VAST trail.

 

TRAILS-MudPondLookout

MUD POND CONSERVATION AREA

Walkers and skiers

A half-mile route from the parking lot on Mud Pond Road (off South Road) leads to Mud Pond, surrounded by 158 acres of wetlands and forest. The trail also connects to Mud Pond Country Park. Mud Pond Conservation Area can also be reached from the Sunset Hill Road parking lot, across the street from the Five Tree Hill trail. It leads 1.5 miles to a newly built lookout over Mud Pon (pictured above), but does not yet connect to the trail on the eastern side of the pond. A trail all the way around the pond is slated to be built in 2014.

 

TRAILS-MudPondCountryPark

MUD POND COUNTRY PARK

Walkers, skiers and mountain bikers

This 79-acre natural area has a 2.3-mile round trip multiple-use trail open to mountain bikers. The trail system expands every year and is well maintained in partnership with mountain biking group the Fellowship of the Wheel. Parking is available on Mud Pond Road.

 

TRAILS-SuckerBrook

CROSSTOWN TRAIL

Walkers and skiers

Opening in July, a new trail will connect the newly formed Sucker Brook Hollow Country Park on Vermont 2A, Five Tree Hill Country Park and the Mud Pond Conservation Area—nearly 3.5 miles in all. From a new trailhead and parking lot on Vermont 2A, the trail lead across a 57-ft long footbridge over the Sucker Brook, past historic features and farmland and up to Five Tree Hill—about 1 mile. The trail then leads down to the new observation platform at Mud Pond. Hikers will not yet be able to connect to the east side of Mud Pond.

 

OAK VIEW HILL

Walkers and skiers

Oak View Hill offers a 1.3-mile outer loop and half a mile of inner loops on the Isham Family Farm, behind the sugarhouse. All the trails are named after Isham family members. Highlights include a pond, active sugar operation and wooded knoll with views of Bolton Valley, Mount Mansfield, Camel’s Hump, Shelburne Pond and the Adirondaks.

 

VILLAGE BIKE PATH

Multi-use

The Village Bike Path runs through the Williston Community Park—which offers a playground, athletic fields and courts and a skating rink/skateboard park—and connects to Allen Brook Park through the South Ridge neighborhood. It also makes a loop along Williston Road, North Williston Road, Mountain View Road and Old Stage Road.  Many other Williston roads include a bike path, including parts of Vermont 2 and 2A and Marshall Avenue.

 

TRAILS-AllenBrook

ALLEN BROOK NATURE TRAIL 

Walkers and skiers

A half-mile loop with an additional half-mile section leading to Michael’s Lane offers a quiet spot to look for birds, beavers, different forest types and spring flowers. The trail connects to the Village Bike Path, starting with a footbridge over the Allen Brook. It is the most accessible primitive path from Williston Village, and is ideal for families.

 

TRAILS-Commons

COMMONS TRAIL 

Walkers and skiers

The Commons Trail offers a half-mile walk off the beaten path, accessed off Tower Lane and Pinecrest Village. The trail passes through common land, includes a boardwalk over a wetland and rock outcroppings perfect for a picnic.

 

LAKE IROQUOIS RECREATION AREA

Walkers and skiers

Along with the sand beach, playground and lake access, the Lake Iroquois Recreation area offers a 1.5-mile hiking trail loop on the northeast side of the lake. The trail passes through forest and includes access to scenic lake viewpoints.

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