Montpelier, VT: White Rocks/Ice Beds

See how weather and geology conspire to make topography.
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See how weather and geology conspire to make topography.

For very little effort, this hike in the Green Mountains pays off handsomely in views of the White Rocks Cliff and Ice Beds, where ice that formed beneath the rocks during the previous winter chills a meltwater stream. Start on the blue-blazed Ice Beds Trail, passing boulders and outcrops; the path swings right, and you’ll ascend to a junction. Here, the White Rocks Trail (which may be closed during peregrine nesting season) spurs left to a fine view of White Rocks Cliff and Otter Creek Valley. Backtrack to the Ice Beds Trail, following it to the double blaze, where you turn right for a rocky descent. After a series of switchbacks, the trail gets gentler and more wooded. Reach a junction with an old road, where you go left and downhill, then cross the brook a few times until it emerges from the base of the White Rocks Slide to the unique Ice Beds. Backtrack on the same trail to the picnic area. Info: fs.fed.us/r9/gmfl -Hike adapted from 50 Hikes in Vermont, by the Green Mountain Club (Countryman Press)

Waypoints

White Rocks Picnic Area

Location: 43.4509429931641, -72.9435653686524