As hotter days descend upon the Northeast, many begin to seek refuge in more desirable conditions. For some, this may mean packing up the kids and heading to an air-conditioned movie theater or to your favorite swimming hole — six-pack in hand. But for a majority of die-hard New Englanders, this means heading for the hills.
During the summer, the higher summits of Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine provide an escape from the heat and dreaded black flies. In New Hampshire alone, there are 48 peaks at or above 4,000 feet — all of which will prove to be more comfortable than the valleys on the hottest days (not to mention the rewarding views). In fact, it isn’t uncommon to see white stuff on the ground into June or even July on the highest peaks.
Of course, you don’t have to trek to the top of the world to have an enjoyable afternoon. The Stowe Pinnacle Trail, just outside of Stowe, Vt., reaches a high point of just 2,616 feet above sea level but still rewards hikers with panoramic views of the surrounding area from its rocky summit.
Regardless of whether you’re hoping to get the kids out for their first hike or looking for a full-day expedition, there are more hikes in the New England region than can be done in a lifetime.