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Road trip from Montreal to Boston

Haifa, Israel
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Road trip from Montreal to Boston

Hi everyone!

Our family (two adults, 4 @ 1.5 yrs old boys) plan to drive from Montreal to Boston, through VT and NH (maybe MN) for 4 days, 3 nights, in late Sep. Our general thoughts for stops and visiting are Plattsburgh or Burlington in Lake Champlain, Montpelier, Waterbury for Ben & Jerry's, White mountains and North Conway, and at the end a decent crab meal near Portsmouth, NH. We plan on short hiking at the white mountains for now.

Can anyone recommend few hours hiking routes in this area, or maybe at the Adirondack area? Any recommendations on how to split the days? Attraction for the kids? Also, is accommodation for 100-150$ is too low?

Thanks

Gil

Burlington, Vermont
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1. Re: Road trip from Montreal to Boston

Choose Burlington, it has lots more to offer than Plattsburgh.

Montpelier is only 45 minutes from Burlington, and while it is somewhat interesting, I can't imagine it has enough to occupy more than a few hours of your time. A visit to B&J's can be combined with a visit to Montpelier. Stowe is also nearby, and is delightful with its wonderful miles-long bike path, and the Long Trail offers hikes nearby, visit http://www.greenmountainclub.org/ for info about that.

North Conway is not very pretty, it's just a lot of shopping outlets, but the drive to it is lovely through the mountains. Be sure to drive the Kancamagus Highway for the ultimate scenic drive.

Portsmouth NH has great seafood, but crab is NOT a New England seafood specialty. You can find crab, but here in New England, lobster and clams and scallops are the local seafood favorites.

$100 to $150 in late September is on the low side, since this is peak tourist season. You can find some places that cheap, but they are less likely to be quality places. Also, if you are planning to come next month, you might find most places already fully booked....so better get going to book a room. Good luck.

Ormond Beach...
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2. Re: Road trip from Montreal to Boston

Some of the best hikes in NH are from the Appalaichia trailhead on Rt. 2 near Jefferson. Dozens of trails are accessible from there and many loops can be done from easy to challenging. There are tons more of course.... off Rt. 302, and from the Franconia Notch State Park as well.

And some of the best hikes in VT IMO are in and around Stowe on Mt. Mansfield and the surrounding mtns.

Edited: 29 August 2012, 01:50
Haifa, Israel
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3. Re: Road trip from Montreal to Boston

Thanks for the helpful information. I might get back with some more structured route for advices.

Haifa, Israel
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4. Re: Road trip from Montreal to Boston

Hi all,

I have few more questions, and will be happy if you can assist me:

1. Does anyone know how ling does it take to cross the US-Canada border near Champlain, at Rt. 87 (crossing from Canada to US)

2. Which mountain and near hikes are nicer - Washington or Mansfield?

3. Hotels between Montpelier and White Mt.?

Thanks

gil

Ormond Beach...
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5. Re: Road trip from Montreal to Boston

I'll let others with more recent experience give info on the border crossing. In past years, it's been fast - like 15 minutes if there's no serious traffic backed up.

For hiking, Mansfield and Washington are quite different, so each has its own pros and cons. I prefer (and am more familiar with) Mansfield. Here's my net of both:

Mansfield is our tallest peak in VT - about 4400 ft above sea level. It's in the Green Mtn range, which is generally a more weathered, rolling range that's mostly wooded and.... green, with few treeless peaks above 4000 ft. The temperature at the peak is generally ~10-15 deg. F cooler than the base. There are spectacular views on the western side of Mansfield (accessable from 2 trailheads in Underhill, VT: Stevensville Road and Underhill State Park). The superb views start about 1/2 way up the western side - after about 1 hr. of hiking time (~1500 vertical ft.), assuming you're a fit and experienced hiker. There are also many trails at the top of Mansfield, which can be accessed easily with little effort from the top of the toll road in Stowe.

Washington is NH's highest peak at 6300ft. It's in the White Mtns., which tend to be much more rugged & rocky. The climate at the peak can be quite different than the base (20-30 deg F cooler, with 30-50+MPH winds), and the elevation gain is ~1.5X that of Mansfield's 2500 vertical ft. So.... hiking up Washington demands more experience and planning - particularly in anything but ideal weather. My hikes on Washington have been on the eastern side - up Huntington Ravine (a difficult and very interesting trail, but only for use in dry weather), Lion's Head, and parts of a few others. The views from those are great near the summit, but require a lot more effort than Mansfield's ~1500 vertical ft to get panoramic scenery. I'm sure the toll road up Washington is fantastic, though I haven't personally done it and rumor has it that it's pretty demanding on your car's brakes. :)

For hotels, there are quite a few on Rt. 2 between Jefferson and Gorham, NH. There are also plenty in Littleton (a small city), and a few in Bethlehem (a nice rural resorty town), NH. Enjoy!

NY, NY
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6. Re: Road trip from Montreal to Boston

One option to consider if you have good weather is driving down to Plattsburgh and taking the ferry to Grand Isle, VT and driving to Burlington, or continuing south from Plattsburgh and taking the ferry from Port Kent to Burlington. I agree with signothetimes that Burlington is a better destination than Plattsburgh. If you decide to drive directly to Burlington and want a more scenic route (in my opinion), take 15 south to 87 in the US and quickly exit onto 11, cross to VT via Rouse's Point on 2 and follow it down through Alburg until you can take West Shore Rd. which runs along the shore of Lake Champlain. You will be able to rejoin 2 to cross to North Hero and continue on through the islands towards Burlington. You should be able to find plenty to interest the kids in the Burlington area--the aquarium, shelburne farms, etc.

7. Re: Road trip from Montreal to Boston

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