The Sherburne Trails, located on Route 100N in Killington, will now remain open for the winter season, thanks to a new agreement with the Green Mountain National Forest (GMNF).
Previously, since its opening in 2015, the Sherburne Trails network has closed its gate to visitors each year on Dec. 15. This year, however, as more people seek a variety of easily accessible recreation options, the trails will remain open. The Sherburne Trails are available for nonmotorized multi-use including snowshoeing and cross country skiing. Fat biking is permitted, but currently grooming is not yet planned.
“In Killington, the options for marked winter trails was limited,” said Town of Killington Recreation Director Sarah Newell. “We know the local economic and recreational benefits of the system, so it made sense to seek to increase the amount of time the trails are accessible.” Newell reached out to Chris Mattrick of GMNF, who helped put all the pieces together.
In past years, the Mountain Meadows Cross Country Ski Center offered snowshoeing and cross country skiing; however, with their decision not to open this year, the town saw a gap.
Additionally, after the incredibly busy bike season over the summer and fall, and with fat bike sales up in local bike shops, it was perceived that there was an increased need for well-marked winter trails accessible from a maintained parking lot.
For recreators interested in activities that don’t involve a lift ticket, the Sherburne Trail network is a great option, Newell noted. Many local businesses sell or rent snowshoes, and the Sherburne Memorial Library lends snowshoes to anyone with a library card.
“Groups plan their trips around skiing,” said Randy Elles of First Stop Board Barn, “but if we can offer alternate options for those in the group who don’t ski, we may draw more people.”
The Town of Killington partners with the Killington Mountain Bike Club (KMBC) to maintain the trails. KMBC is currently fundraising for expanded operations, new trails, and important equipment.
For more information visit killingtonmountainbikeclub.org.