Want to challenge yourself to get outside and visit new places in the Upper Valley this fall? This trail challenge is for you! We are challenging you to complete all eight trails before December 1st!  Each participant who completes all 8 trails will earn a UVLT patch. All you have to do is download the log sheet and fill it in as you go on your hikes! Submit your completed form to Alison at alison.marchione@uvlt.org to receive your prize!

Each of the trails on the Crazy Eight list are our “lesser known” trails. No Smith Pond or Mink Brook on this list! Travel to new places while still remaining in the Upper Valley for all your hiking needs! 

Hike Descriptions

Up on the Hill: Charlestown, Claremont, and Unity, NH

Over 1,000 acres of farm and forest land makes Up on the Hill our largest conservation area and a very special place to visit. The property is actively managed for agriculture and forestry, with a large trails network that is open to the public for recreation. This large forested property is actively used for agriculture and forestry and is open to the public for recreation. A new trail was put in in the summer of 2020 so now is the perfect time to check this property out! Trails range from an easy hike up to a pond and beautiful view of Ascutney to longer loops through the woods. Read about the land here and you can find a trail map here.

Lake Runnemede/Paradise Park: Windsor, VT

Right in the heart of downtown Windsor, VT Lake Runnemede and Paradise Park offer convenient recreation within walking distance of the town center. Lake Runnemede is a unique body of water body: so pure and alkaline that it hosts a species of pondweed only found in six lakes in the entire country. Surrounded by the beautiful forest and trails of Paradise Park, the lake has been appreciated by generations of Windsor residents.Take a walk around the lake to see the beavers and water lilies or a trek or bike through the woods to see the many water features, campground, and forested landscape. You can find a trail map here. 

Bear Pond Natural Area: Canaan, NH  

The Bear Pond area is UVLT’s largest NH project by acreage, with over 900 acres including 95 acres of peat bog and 65 acres of wetlands at the headwaters of the Mascoma River. The bogs host a number of rare plant species and have been described as some of the best bogs in the state. The property also features a variety of other terrain, including 60-foot-tall rock outcrops, and is primarily covered in woodlands. Click for a Map.

Clay Brook Trail: Lyme NH

A 3-mile trail north of the village of Lyme, Clay Brook offers a trip through multiple ecosystem types as well as a view of history, from the bottom of the postglacial Lake Hitchcock, along an old Abenaki road, and through the region’s agrarian past. The wetlands host a variety of bird life, including herons and kingbirds. Click for a Trail Description or Map.

Collette Trail/Bicknell Brook: Enfield NH

The Colette Trail follows a portion of Bicknell Brook along its downstream course to Crystal Lake, connecting with the Bicknell Brook Trail Loop along the way. From cascading waterfalls to open beaver wetlands to climax forest to a lake environment, the Colette Trail offers a wide range of habitat diversity. Click for Trail Description or Map.

Ely Mountain Conservation Area: Thetford, VT

Located at the northern edge of Thetford’s largest unfragmented forest area, Ely Mountain is UVLT’s newest conservation ownership. Acquired through a gift of Jock and Deecie Denison and supported by contributions from 90 local families and businesses and the Thetford Conservation Commission, this property is open to the public for hiking, snowshoeing and skiing. You will find huge old trees, rock outcroppings, glacial boulders, seeps and streams. Click for map and more information

Snow Mountain: Enfield, NH

Access and logging roads provide access into this 400-acre tract which spans Enfield, Grantham, and Plainfield. The multiple forest community types and four wetland complexes provide habitat to a huge variety of flora as well as wildlife like birds, bears, and beavers. There is no signage to direct hikers, but the area is open for exploration. To reach Snow Mountain, take Exit 15 off of I-89, and turn onto Old Route 10 going south. After a mile, just before the Upper Valley Humane Society, there is a pullout on the right. Park by the locked gate (but please DON’T block the road) and walk in. Click for a trail map.

Sally Drew Trail: Vershire, VT

This trail to the top of Patterson Mountain is named for Sally Drew, who found a way to purchase a large tract of land and conserve it in 1991. Drew then donated the top of the mountain to the town of Vershire, and sold the rest of the property. The trail that bears her name provides an opportunity to see natural forest succession in action, in addition to beautiful views over eastern Vermont. It has since been incorporated into the Cross Rivendell Trail. You can explore the area and find directions using the Cross Rivendell Trail online interactive map.

Ely Mountain Conservation Area

To complete the Crazy Eight Fall Trail Challenge just fill out the Hiking Challenge Log, complete the hikes, fill out the log, and send it into Alison at alison.marchione@uvlt.org

Get outside and have some fun hiking this fall!