Mount Mansfield Loop Trail

HARD 49 reviews
#3 of 11 trails in

Mount Mansfield Loop Trail is a 7.5 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Underhill, Vermont that features beautiful wild flowers and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
7.5 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2723 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dogs on leash

backpacking

birding

camping

hiking

nature trips

scenic driving

walking

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

bugs

muddy

rocky

scramble

Mount Mansfield is the highest peak in the state of Vermont and is located in Chittenden County within the Green Mountains. The hike begins at Underhill State Park off of Mountain Road where there is plenty of parking available in the parking area for a fee of $4/person. Because the park has tent camping, there are bathrooms and potable water available at the trailhead. The hike starts along CCC Road. You will continue on CCC Road until you reach Maple Ridge Trail. Maple Ridge Trail is the most technical part of the hike. Two parts of the Maple Ridge Trail stand out as scariest. One is a rock wall that has only limited grips and toe holds, and a fall off that wall would cause serious harm. The second part is a chasm about six feet deep that you have to leap over. As with climbing the rock wall, there is no margin for error with this leap. You have to commit and then execute properly. The average adult may find it frightening but will be able to do it safely. Because of these two challenging sections, it is not recommend to attempt this hike in bad weather conditions where the rocks would be wet or icy. You will then reach the Long Trail and continue along the Long Trail north, passing the forehead, the nose and northward along the ridgeline to the Chin. From there, you can extend the trip up to Adams Apple or turn around and begin the descent along the Sunset Ridge Trail. The is a great hike to Vermont's highest point that boasts spectacular views once you get to the rocky outcrops on the Maple Ridge Trail and will continue to impress on the Long Trail and for most of the descent on the Sunset Ridge Trail. Mount Mansfield is also one of two places in Vermont where Alpine Tundra can be found.

3 months ago

bit muddy and wet. crazy views througout the hike. some tricky rock scramble sections. very well marked.

4 months ago

Nice hike. Hells brook ascent to the Adam's apple and chin was definitely a rigorous but rewarding climb.

hiking
4 months ago

conditions : wet + windy + leaves
Trail : loop starting from ccc road @ up maple ridge @ long trail (forehead to chin) @ down sunset ridge
stats : 5h (including breaks) / 12km / 867m
cost : 4$ US per person, they also accept Canadian money.
This is my 4th hike ever (my biggest yet), it was a great personnal challenge.
Great advice from the park ranger : start going up maple ridge in these wet conditions, it would've been very dangerous going down those slippery rock walls.
Very hard on the knees going down such technical terrain, using hiking poles normally help but the ground is so irregular we could use them only near the bottom.

trail running
5 months ago

Great hike and views, though highly trafficked on the Sunset Ridge portion. Would recommend going counter-clockwise, as others have reported.

hiking
6 months ago

I did this loop counterclockwise just like at least two other reviewer's had suggested. It was fantastic. Completely socked in with fog for the first 3 1/2 hours, it finally cleared and the mountains revealed themselves. Next time I'm going to head up the Cliff Trail.

hiking
7 months ago

amazing!!! the way up via sunset ridge is relatively easy, but the way down on the Half way house trail is another story!! Very technical and slippery but the views were incredible!! Loved every minutes of the day!!! I will hike it counterclockwise next time! Happy trails

8 months ago

G

hiking
8 months ago

This is a tough hike that begins at Underhill State Park, which had plenty of parking available for Memorial Day weekend in 2017 and charged $4/person. Because the park has tent camping, there are bathrooms and potable water available at the trailhead. The total time actually hiking was about 6.5 hours, and the actual distance of the hike was about 9.7 miles. GPS systems will calculate the distance as if this area were flat and show a distance of 8.7 miles.

My girlfriend and I did the Mt. Mansfield loop counterclockwise, which is the direction I would recommend because the Maple Ridge Trail is the most technical part of the hike and would be more difficult to do descending than ascending. Two parts of the Maple Ridge Trail stand out as scariest. One is a rock wall that has only limited grips and toe holds, and a fall off that wall would cause serious harm. I took off my backpack for that part and still found it to be scary. I wish they would add some rebar grips or a ladder there. The second part is a chasm about six feet deep that you have to leap over. As with climbing the rock wall, there is no margin for error with this leap. You have to commit and then execute properly. The average adult may find it frightening but will be able to do it safely. I would not recommend it for small children or for anyone with limited mobility. Because of these two challenging sections, I would not recommend this hike in slippery conditions where the rocks would be wet or icy.

The views on the hike are spectacular once you get to the rocky outcrops on the Maple Ridge Trail and will continue to impress on the Long Trail and for most of the descent on the Sunset Ridge Trail. The Sunset Ridge Trail gets much more foot traffic than the Maple Ridge Trail because most hikers from Underhill do an out and back taking the Sunset Ridge Trail toward the peak of Mount Mansfield.

9 months ago

Well kept and indicated! Did do the loop trail, but walked from p2 to taylor lodge for day1, long trail to butler lodge for day2 and back to p2 for day3! Nice little hicking, still had a lot of snow up to butler lodge! The lodge are clean and well done.

hiking
9 months ago

Stayed at a lean-to in Underhill State Park and hiked up the next day. It was a challenging hike, but the distance made it doable.

hiking
Sunday, October 30, 2016

Hiked from Underhill State Park. 8.5 mile strenuous hike. Great views during the hike and at the summit(s). It was near peak foliage and ver beautiful.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

a bit more challenging than I thought it'd be, but totally worth it.

backpacking
Friday, July 15, 2016

We spent a week Hiking The Green Mountains of VT. This was probably my favorite part.The Cliff Trail is awesome, would be sketchy in rain or snow, lots of scrambles and squeezes. The view from Summit is great.You can hike the long trail up or take Gondola to Cliff trail or even take toll road and hike along summit. Spectacular.Would like to go back and explore West side of the Ridge.Dont recommend a heavy pack on Cliff Trail.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

moderate. great views

hiking
Monday, October 12, 2015

Breath taking view! Or maybe that was the hike up lol. I had a wonderful day doing this trail it was unforgettable to say the least.

hiking
Monday, October 12, 2015

Great Views! My only suggestion would be to avoid the cliff trail if you are afraid of heights. There a few places where you are climbing up over large rocks that leave you feeling a bit uneasy. Also make sure you pack a lot of water. I know that should go without saying but I passed a few groups that were out of water and I ended up giving away one of my large water bottles.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Rough

hiking
Friday, October 10, 2014

The gondola at the Stowe Mountain Resort is another pleasant trip to nearly the top of Mt. Mansfield. It's $25 for a round trip but it doesn't take you all the way to the top. If you turn left (facing UP the mountain) out of the gondola building you'll find the Cliff Trail. If you turn right you'll encounter the Long Trail and the "Profanity" Trail - which was the route I took up. I met a couple guys at the hut and from there did the "Profanity Trail - without succumbing to cursing out loud. It was a little harder than I remember from undergrad days. Got to the summit just fine and took the Cliff Trail down. Some rock face scrambling and one particularly tricky spot that required a short unsupported jump but I made it down just fine to the gondola ride down. Nice.

hiking
Thursday, August 01, 2013

I would recommend the Sunset Ridge Trail. Park rangers and other people I met on the trail recommended it for being a little more scenic. The sunset ridge trail has the lowest elevation climb over the course of the trail at 3.2 miles per 2,600 feet of elevation gain. Drive to Underhill State Park. It costs 3 dollars per adult for parking. Chat with the park rangers who take good care of the area. There are bathrooms at the start. The trail wasn't all that difficult until you go above the tree line and then its just walking on rock face. Stay on the rocks and follow the trail. There is a lot of artic vegetation that could easily be trampled out of existence. Once you get above the tree line, enjoy the view and now the real hike begins. It's a deceivingly long hike up to the chin. The view is 360° of amazing views. If you are lucky like I was, you will get a chance to stand in an actual cloud as it rolls in. The hike down the sunset ridge trail was rough because of all the steep rock face you have to climb down. Below the tree line it is easy to pick up the pace. It took us 3 hours up which I thought was a really slow pace and 1.5 hours down.

hiking
Friday, October 28, 2011

The Toll Road is the easiest way to the summit of Mount Mansfield. This route starts from the nose and follows the Long Trail north towards the chin. Though its the easiest route most people hiking to the summit do not use this route. The views along the ridge to the summit are superb. Mount Mansfield is the highest mountain in Vermont; being the highest in the state it is also the highpoint of Chittenden County. The mountain gets its name because when viewed from the east its summit ridge resembles the profile of a human face, and the names of its prominent features reflect this: Adams Apple (4,060'), Chin (4,393', highest point), Nose (4,062') and Forehead (3,940'). For about 2.3 miles (from the Adams Apple to the Forehead) the Long Trail is almost constantly above treeline, the only such long stretch of alpine zone in Vermont. Please stay on the trail to avoid harming the delicate vegetation! Mount Mansfield is one of two places in Vermont where Artic Tundra can be found.

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