Sentinel Rock

A couple of weekends ago we took our annual foliage drive through the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont. The colors were popping with vibrant reds and oranges. We drove up past Lake Willoughby and were shocked at the number of hikers vehicles spilling out of trailheads and parked along the narrow highway. It almost made us second guess our destination, just a few minutes from the bustle of Willoughby. We were headed to Sentinel Rock State Park in Westmore, VT.

This relatively new park was somewhat quiet with few visitors. The majority of visitors seemed to just stay a few minutes- to view the rock and leave.

We knew there was some hiking trails that went through a few interesting forest types, so we had packed a bag and started out.

The glacial erratic is impressive and an interpretive panel will tell of it’s geologic history. Settlers of this land cleaved pieces of the rock for their homestead foundations and you can see their drill holes.

A nice view down to Lake Willoughby made a perfect lunch spot for us before we hiked the Fence Line Trail. In the woods the evergreen forest with impressive burls shaded us immediately. We took the loop trail counter-clockwise as the forest turned into mixed hardwood trees. The trail follows a ravine with a trickling brook  (nearly dry then).

A map we had found of the different forest types promised a cedar swamp, but the trail turned away just as we got close. Another trail is in the works and we hope it includes the opportunity to see the cedars.

We looped back around to the Fence Line Trail and back out to the open fields. This was a fun little exploration and hope you get a chance to visit it too.

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