Manchester, VT: Stratton Pond via the Long Trail

Ogle fiery color in the Green Mountains.

Stratton Mountain puts on an unreal show for leaf peepers. "It's explosive," raves Mike Fox, a member of Backpacker's regional panel. "The summit view is like watching a fireworks display from above." From the trailhead at the end of Arlington-Stratton Road, 20 miles from Manchester, head north on the Long Trail.
The route ascends Stratton's southern slope for 3.4 miles, beneath a canopy of paper birch (yellows), beech (oranges), and maple (reds), before reaching the 3,936-foot summit and its 55-foot-high fire tower. Continue on the LT 2.6 miles to Stratton Pond. Camp here or link to the Stratton Pond Trail for a 3.9-mile cruise back to the road. Turn left and go 1.1 mile to your car.
MAP AND GUIDE: Vermont's Long Trail ($10,; Hiking Vermont, by Larry Plechter ($16,
CONTACT: (802) 362-2307,
-Mapped by Berne Broudy,

Trail Facts

  • Distance: 10.2



Location: 43.061165, -72.968582

At its crossing on Stratton-Arlington Road, the Long Trail (also the AT) heads east from the Branch Deerfield River, then departs back into the woods from the far end of the parking lot.


Location: 43.068466, -72.949165

Cross a jeep road. Ahead, the climb up Stratton Mountain increases in pitch, gaining approximately 1,300 feet in the next 2.1 miles.


Location: 43.085934, -72.924896

Stratton Mountain (3,936 ft.): A summit firetower offers great Green Mountain views. Continue downhill, heading northwest from the summit.


Location: 43.099983, -72.946182

Shortly after a spring, cross a jeep road to continue west towards Stratton Pond. Ahead the trail meets a small river.


Location: 43.102001, -72.96405

Turn right to continue north along Stratton Pond on the Long Trail. This junction also leads to the Stratton Pond Shelter. A tenting area is available here via the North Shore Trail.


Location: 43.103286, -72.964668

Continue to the right at Stratton Pond. Tenting areas are available to the left and right here. Follow the same route back to the trailhead.

Stratton Pond

Location: 43.103302, -72.964529