I spent a few days traveling across Vermont and New Hampshire and saw amazing views while experiencing new things and learning a to!
I started off and a few hours of beautiful views later I came to a small back road that ended in a ferry.I have not been on a ferry in a very long time and definitely not one that only holds about fifteen cars. It was quite charming and after just a short ride, maybe 15 min, I was suddenly in Vermont.
My GPS was set to fastest route but it took me on mostly back roads through small towns and countryside. I saw small farms and rolling hills and I would not have done it differently. I had no deadline to meet or time to be anywhere so I could relish feeling just a little bit lost and often I would round a wooded corner and be totally floored by an amazing view.
This is the way to see Vermont, not on the highway but back roads, through the heart of it.
I was heading for White Mountain National Forest so I did not make any long stops but i felt that I really got to see a lot and enjoy my drive.
National Forests make for wonderful camping, if you time it right, and it’s often free or very inexpensive. Backwoods camping with no hookups, but still! I did not plan well and arrived in the area around 5:30 at night and was running out of daylight hours to find a site and set up. As a last resort I drove past a KOA sign and went for it. KOA campsites are for the most part, always a good last resort. They are less expensive than a hotel and you get a hot shower and nice site.
However, being stubborn, I asked for a site away from everyone, thinking I didn’t want to deal with people; and that night I learned that I am very very scared of bears. Why? Most likely the same explanation for my irrational fear of spiders. I HAVE NO IDEA.
Every snap of a tree branch was a bear coming to eat me. I was so far away from everyone else that I did not have the comfort of someone coming to save me before I got eaten. (I have a really active imagination) Well, no sleep was had that night. Okay maybe a few hours but I think that was my body passing out from exhaustion and cold.
I woke up with head-cold like symptoms and a severe case of back ache. But I got a hot shower!
After a good breakfast, which I forced myself to make using my stove the first time, I headed out and towards Maine. I gave it a gallant effort, but eventually I gave into my body and decided to stop for the night at a hotel and catch up on sleep, hoping to arrive in Maine fresh and ready to camp again.
It worked and I awoke refreshed and ready to roll the next day!
Looking back this experience made everything so much better. Because it helped me remember that everything will not be all puppies and rainbows (I have yet to see a puppy actually) and that even when I have a bad day it makes the good ones so much better.
Arriving in Acadia National Park the next day was a wonderful experience and really solidified pushing through the tough stuff.
And Acadia…WOW.. but that’s another story.