The tour begins at the award-winning Swift House Inn in
Middlebury, Vermont. If you are flying to the tour, VBT will offer a shuttle
from the Burlington International Airport departing at 2:00 p.m. Please call
Morf Transit, Inc./Benway's Taxi 800-696-7433 to make a reservation, clearly
stating you are a VBT guest. Morf Transit, Inc./Benway's Taxi will make one
complimentary transfer for VBT guests at 2:00 p.m. The shuttle will be coming
from the Pre-trip hotel with VBT guests. Please allow for traffic delays.
If your flight arrives after this time, you will need to
arrange your own transportation to the Swift House Inn at your own expense.
Please call one of the following taxi companies: Benway's Taxi (telephone
802-862-1010), Jessica's Vital Transit (telephone 802-349-8833), or Middlebury
Transit (telephone 888-666-3471). Travel time from the Burlington airport is
approximately 60 minutes.
For guests driving to the tour, check in time at the Swift
House Inn is at 3:00 p.m. If you think you will arrive earlier than this time,
please contact the inn to confirm they can accommodate your early arrival. Parking
is available without charge at the Swift House during your stay in Middlebury.
Due to the limited size of the Swift House parking area, before the tour leaves
Middlebury, let your VBT Trip Leaders know that you have a car. They will
assist you with moving it to another location in town for the remainder of the
VBT Pre-Trip Extension guests: You have another morning to
enjoy Burlington. At 1:45 p.m., the shuttle company will meet and transfer you
to the Swift House Inn in Middlebury. The shuttle will stop at the airport to
pick up arriving VBT guests.
Meet your VBT Trip Leaders at 3:30 p.m. in your cycling
clothes for a bike fitting and brief cycling-skills clinic. This will be
immediately followed by a short warm-up ride. Then, gather at 6:00 p.m. for an
orientation meeting and welcome cocktail. We will enjoy a candlelit dinner at
the inn at 7:00 p.m.
Day 2 - Cycle through Salisbury and along Lake Dunmore
Today's ride takes you past antique stores, weeping willows
and stone fences along quiet roads leading to Lake Dunmore and Branbury State
Park (named for the towns of Brandon and Salisbury). After a picnic lunch, take
a swim in refreshing Lake Dunmore before getting back on your bicycle. Finish
the day with a scenic ride back to Middlebury. Explore the college town of
Middlebury, with its Main Street of shops, restaurants and galleries. Visit
Cannon Park and view an historic marker commemorating John Deere and his
invention of the plow that broke the plains. From 1821 to 1825, Deere
apprenticed at an area blacksmith shop before moving to Illinois, where he
built the world's first steel moldboard plow. Tonight your Trip Leaders can
direct you to one of the town's great restaurants, all within walking distance
of our inn.
Day 3 - Cycle north to Bristol and Basin Harbor Club
Today we cycle along Middlebury's peaceful back roads and
beside the Hogback Mountain Ridge, a major foothill of the Green Mountains.
Continue north to Bristol village, gateway to the Green Mountains and Worldwide
Headquarters of VBT Bicycling and Walking Vacations. The village is amazingly
flat; ancient geologic events deposited a level “fan” of gravel at the New
Haven River “water gap” through the mountain ridge. Bristol has many
interesting shops, including Vermont Honeylights and Art on Main. After lunch
on your own in Bristol, cycle to Vergennes, passing Cedar Lake and rolling farm
fields. Take in spectacular views of the Champlain Valley, Adirondacks and
Otter Creek as you make your way to Basin Harbor. Dinner is served in the Basin
Harbor Club's Red Mill Restaurant.
Day 4 - West Addison and Chimney Point/Kayaking on Dead Creek
Today we cycle along the gently rolling farm fields of
Panton, with panoramic views of the Green Mountains and the Adirondacks.
Continue south to visit Chimney Point Historic Site and the Champlain Bridge,
half a mile long and one of the few bridges that cross Lake Champlain. Riding
in a clockwise loop, follow Lake Street with its apple orchards and Arnold Bay
Road northward back to Basin Harbor, enjoying lake and mountainside vistas
along the way. After an included lunch on the terrace at the Basin Harbor Club,
head to the shore for your private, guided kayaking excursion through the Dead
Creek Wildlife Management Area. Dinner is on your own tonight.
Day 5 - Cycle to Kingsland Bay and Ferrisburgh/Farewell dinner
Spend some time in Vergennes, the “smallest city” in
America, for some shopping and great food (lunch is on your own). Be sure to
check out the nooks and crannies, as some of the shops in Vergennes are located
below the main level. Our ride today is along the tranquil Otter Creek to
Kingsland Bay, one of Vermont's newest state parks. It continues northeasterly
to Ferrisburgh, then heads west, adding to our daily dose of gorgeous views.
You have many options this afternoon—perhaps strolling,
swimming or golfing. Enjoy an included visit to the Lake Champlain Maritime
Museum. With more than a dozen exhibit buildings, it presents a comprehensive
overview of the maritime history and nautical archaeology of the Champlain
Valley. You could also relax on the beautiful Basin Harbor grounds. Gather with
the group for a farewell dinner celebration in a private room off the club's
main dining room tonight.
NOTE: Basin Harbor Club has a dress code for its Main Dining
Room dinner guests. From June 15 through September 2, gentlemen must wear a jacket.
Otherwise, a collared shirt is acceptable. At no time may gentlemen wear
sandals, shorts or jeans. Women may not
wear shorts or jean skirts. Dress
sandals are acceptable for women to wear.
Day 6 - Explore Morgan Horse Farm and Middlebury
Leaving Lake Champlain, ride southeast to the quiet town of
Weybridge, with its Victorian farmhouses and westerly views across the Lemon
Fair River. Next, continue on to the UVM Morgan Horse Farm for an included
visit. The farm is dedicated to the preservation and improvement of the Morgan
horse through breeding and selection. Designated as a National Historic Site,
the farm is also home to significant Morgan history. After your visit, pedal
into Middlebury and enjoy lunch on your own. The tour concludes at Vermont Sun
Sports and Fitness on Exchange Street, where showers are available from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. VBT has made arrangements for a
shuttle from Vermont Sun and Fitness in Middlebury back to the airport at 2
p.m. (travel time approximately 60 minutes). If you need to get back to the
airport prior to that time, the transfer back to Burlington will be at your own
expense. If you drove to the start of the tour, your car will be parked at
Vermont Sun, and you may depart at your leisure.