Addison County High Point Trip Report

Mt Abraham (4,006 ft)

Date: June 23, 1997
Author: Fred Lobdell

General: Mt. Abraham is on the Long Trail. It is a 5.2 mile round trip, with about 1,580 feet of elevation gain, to hike from Lincoln Gap on the Lincoln-Warren Highway, returning the way you came.

It is also possible to hike from Lincoln Gap north over Mt. Abraham and the other summits of Lincoln Mountain; Mt. Ellen, one of the two possibilities for the high point of Washington County; and General Stark Mountain, ending at Appalachian Gap. This requires that a car be left at the latter gap, or that a pick- up be arranged. The total hike, if this is done, is 11.6 miles, and makes a very nice day hike. It took me about 8 hours, including a lunch break at Ellen's summit, but it could be done more quickly if one were in a hurry. I would recommend that this hike be done from south to north, as the climb from Appalachian Gap to the summit of General Stark is quite steep in places.

Historical:General Stark commanded the victorious Vermont militia at the battle of Bennington in August 1777, where the Americans defeated about 2,000 British soldiers sent to commandeer supplies for General Burgoyne's embattled army. Two months later Burgoyne surrendered after his lines were broken at the battle of Saratoga. The charge that broke the British lines was led by General Benedict Arnold, who defied General Gates' orders confining him to his tent. This American victory convinced the French that the colonial cause was winnable, and they signed a treaty with the colonies in February 1778 and supplied considerable military and naval aid. Saratoga is considered by most historians to be the turning point of the war. There is a monument to Stark's victory in the village of Bennington.

Access: From the hamlet of Rocky Dale on VT rtes. 17 & 116, take the Lincoln-Warren Highway east about 9 miles to a height of land. Here there is parking and a trailhead for the Long Trail. If you wish to do this as a through hike to Appalachian Gap, a car will need to be left there. Appalachian Gap is on VT 17, about 10 miles east of its junction with VT 116.

Directions to Summit: Hike north on the white-blazed Long Trail. The Battell Shelter is at 1.8 miles. Another 0.8 mile brings you to the summit of Abraham. For the continuation of this hike north to the summit of Mt. Ellen and beyond, see my report under Washington County.