Groton State Park
Things to do in Cabot during Fall Foliage
The village of Cabot was originally settled on Cabot Plains, located on an east/west ridge northeast of the village today. When the skies are clear, you get a spectacular, sweeping view of the Green Mountains to the west, and the White Mountains to the east, beyond the Cabot Plains Cemetery. Not too long after settling in the Plains, the townsfolk decided that access to water was critical. So they moved the village to its present location down in the valley and next to the Winooski River.
Cabot Plains has been spruced up and today you’ll see a covered bridge and a one-room schoolhouse. The fields are private property.
The Bayley-Hazen Road was built as a military road during the Revolutionary War to help the Continental Army invade Quebec. Started by Jacob Bayley and finished by Moses Hazen, it stretches from Newbury, VT to St. John’s, Quebec, running through Cabot Plains. In its heyday, it was the sole road connecting this area to other towns. Parts of the road are still used today, and are nice for walks.
There is a stretch of the road that starts at Cabot Plains that is very picturesque and wonderful for fall foliage. It makes an easy hike.
Danville Hill Road
If you take Danville Hill Road to get to Route 2 from Cabot, you’ll notice a large American flag hanging across the road at the crest looking down at the town and the Green Mountains to the west. This is the work of the Nally family, who live in the home next to the flag. It is a favorite with photographers.
Bothfeld Hill & Talbert Sugar House
There are several beautiful spots in Cabot that aren’t official destinations. If you take Elm Street to Bothfeld Hill Road, you’ll climb up to view the other side of Cabot. From the Talbert sugar house you’ll get an excellent view of lower Cabot. We recommend you also keep driving to the top of the hill, and take a right on Churchill Road. Drive along Churchill Road and look to your right. The views are amazing any time of year, but particularly during foliage season.
Burtt’s Apple Orchard
Pick your own apples, pears and pumpkins, with cider donuts, cider and more for sale in the shop. There’s a free corn maze too. Plenty of wholesome entertainment for the whole family. On Cabot Plains Road. More information here.
Ackermann Maple Farm (tour by appointment)
Ian and Caitlin Ackermann would be happy to give you a tour of their maple syrup operations. They have a combination of super high tech equipment and traditional wood fired boilers. Contact them here.
Goodrich’s Maple Farm
The Goodrichs have a large operation with a patent-pending boiler in their sugarhouse on Route 2. The sugarhouse also includes a store where you can purchase a wide range of maple syrup and other maple products. The free tour is very informative.
Joe’s Pond, in West Danville, is a popular lake with camps lining its banks. It is named after a Native American man who spent his summers, along with his wife Molly, hunting and fishing around the pond and helped early settlers in the area. A nearby pond is named after Molly.The northwest end of Joe’s Pond is undeveloped and the old railroad line, now a rail trail, makes for a nice walk or bike.
Owl’s Head offers one of the most beautiful, iconic views in Vermont, an open vista easily reached by a short climb. It is located inside Groton State Park. There is an easy-to-drive dirt road that leads up the mountain. Once you get to the end of the road, you can park (note there may be a lot of cars there during foliage season) and then hike to the top. It should take anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes to get to the top, where you can enjoy the view of Kettle Pond and Lake Groton and beyond.
Groton State Park ponds/lakes
Groton State Park is a hidden jewel a stone’s throw from Cabot. It’s not as well known or popular as some of Vermont’s other state parks, which is fine with locals. You can enjoy quiet, peaceful hikes through the forest and up the mountains. There are several ponds and lakes in the park including Lake Groton, Kettle Pond, and Osmore Pond. There are also campsites around the ponds.
Big Deer Mountain in Groton State Park
It’s a moderate hike to the top of Big Deer Mountain, where you will find a nice view of Lake Groton. Depending upon where you start from it can take anywhere from 30 to 60 minutes to reach the summit. There are extensive trails throughout the park.
Lamoille Valley Rail Trail from West Danville to St. Johnsbury
The old railroad tracks have been removed and remade into a trail, now you can bike all the way from Joe’s Pond in West Danville to St. Johnsbury. Note that it is all downhill, which is great until you need to get back. If you’re looking for a lighter ride you might want to take two cars and park one in West Danville and the other in St. Johnsbury.
Route 2 Scenic Views
There are several dramatic views on your way from West Danville to St. Johnsbury on Route 2. There’s an official pullover at the crest of a hill just outside Danville on the way to St. Johnsbury, with a great view of Mt. Washington.
Food & Drink
The Den at Harry’s Hardware
A bar at a hardware store? The Den is a fun local gathering spot with Vermont craft beer and food, open Thurs. - Sat. 4-8 p.m. In addition to the bar inside the hardware store, there is an excellent beer garden out back with food, drink, and music on Friday nights. Check Facebook for specials.
Cabot Village Store
Aside from the essentials, the Village Store has an excellent deli with sandwiches, soup and pizza. Open daily.