Hiking the Robert Frost Interpretive Trail in Vermont

Robert Frost Interpretive Trail, Ripton, VTLocation: Robert Frost Interpretive Trail, Ripton, VT
Date: July  2, 2015
Distance: 1.13 miles roundtrip
Elevation Gain: 65 feet
Our Hiking Time: 1 hours, 24 minutes roundtrip
Trail Blaze: Blue Diamonds
Difficulty: Easy

Trail Map

For several weeks this summer, we are up in Vermont while Kendra takes classes for another Masters. Because nerd. (Not that I am one to talk…) For the first summer in a long time, I am not working (aside from teaching online), so I am staying home with the kids. Oh. My. Goodness. I am tired. But also loving it.

Last week our friend Meg visited with her two kids, Sport and Sunshine. (She and her wife, Marcy, are fostering to adopt, hence the nicknames. Check out their awesome blog, Our Imperfect Lives, to read about their adventures in fostering!)

Each day while Kendra is in school, I try to take the kids out for a morning adventure. For this hike, Meg and the kids joined us as well! With a four-year old, a two-year old, and three one-year olds, we knew we needed an easy loop, so we headed to the Robert Frost Interpretive Trail in the Green Mountain National Forest.

The trailhead begins in the parking lot, and because it is a loop, you can choose to go right or left. We chose right, and immediately entered the forest. It wasn’t long before we came to a beautiful boardwalk across a small pond and wetlands. The kids peered into the water, searching for frogs.

Robert Frost Interpretive Trail, Ripton, VT

We continued on the trail, through the wetlands, until we came to a bridge crossing the south branch of the Middlebury River. The kids raced across, stopping to check out the water below.

Robert Frost Interpretive Trail, Ripton, VT

On the other side of the bridge, the trail was a bit tricky for Kate and Evan. True to his nature, Evan plowed up the hill while Kate was more cautious. She was very proud of herself when she got to the top, proclaiming, “I did it mama! I big girl!” I was so proud of her determination.

The trail continues through the woods, eventually leading to blueberry fields. On the way, we stopped to read the poetry of Robert Frost that dots the trail.

Robert Frost Interpretive Trail, Ripton, VT

After a quick stop for snacks, we headed into the fields – unfortunately, it was too early in the summer to pick blueberries or raspberries. It wasn’t long before we decided to turn back, as the twins were getting tired and Sunshine was itching to get out of her Kelty kid carrier. What we didn’t realize was that it would have been shorter to just finish the loop and not retrace our steps! (This is why you should always have a paper copy of the trail map, even for short hikes.)

Robert Frost Interpretive Trail, Ripton, VT Robert Frost Interpretive Trail, Ripton, VTRobert Frost Interpretive Trail, Ripton, VT Robert Frost Interpretive Trail, Ripton, VT

Along the way back, we made several stops to look at flowers and explore the small streams below the wooden bridges along the trail. We also made a pit stop for Addie to poop in the woods. She never ceases to amaze me with her ease in popping a squat in the middle of nowhere. I didn’t have my trowel, so we made do with a stick and she helped me bury the goods. I have a complete aversion to pooping while hiking, so I am glad the kids are getting accustomed to it early so they aren’t shy or awkward like me!

Robert Frost Interpretive Trail, Ripton, VT Robert Frost Interpretive Trail, Ripton, VT Robert Frost Interpretive Trail, Ripton, VT

It wasn’t long before we completed the smaller of the two loops on the trail, and returned to the parking area. This was a great hike for little legs – one we will certainly do again before the summer is over!

Robert Frost Interpretive Trail, Ripton, VT

Know Before You Go!

  • There is a pit toilet at the trailhead.
  • Dogs must be on a leash.
  • The trail is open for day use only (6:00 AM to 10:00 PM)
  • Across Rt. 125, the Robert Frost Wayside has picnic tables and grills, as well as another pit toilet. This is a great place to enjoy lunch after your hike!

Directions to the Trail Head

From Middlebury: Travel south on Route 7 to where it intersects with Route 125. Travel east on Route 125 for 5.8 miles. The parking area is on the right.

From Rochester: Travel north on Route 100 to its intersection with Route 125. Travel west on Route 125 for 9.9 miles. The parking area is on the left.

About Jen

Outdoor adventurer and traveler. Writer, Photographer & Communications Professor. Wife. Mom of twins plus one. Tubbs Snowshoes Ambassador. Blogger at gayfamilytrips.com.

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3 Responses to Hiking the Robert Frost Interpretive Trail in Vermont

  1. gDad July 16, 2015 at 7:42 am #

    I sure hope Kate ‘n Evan won’t mind doing this trail again since I would love for them to show me the way around. You find the neatest places to roam with the little ‘critters’.


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