Inger and Jeff Latreille
~Tuesday, October 12, 2021~
Wouldn’t you know it. One day left and the gray tank is full!! To avoid emptying out the truck to get to the way back to pull out the Blue Boy, we decided the remainder of our gray water use would go in the black tank (we have a large bowl that we use to do dishes in the sink for situations like this). O.k. enough said about that. No showers in the trailer today. But, just a short walk down the road from our campsite is a very nice shower/bath facility they must have recently added, as everything looked brand new. Fifty-cents for the first 4 minutes and up to $1.25 for 10 minutes. Solar operated showers are really becoming the norm, and the water temp/pressure at this campground did not disappoint. I must admit, it is so nice indulging in a shower lasting longer than 3 minutes. 👍🚿
Happy to have some great weather on our final day in the Waterbury area. Though Jeff and I still have 2 more campgrounds to go in Vermont, we can’t say enough about the Waterbury area. Definitely check it out on your next Vermont visit. We were going to try and pack Burlington and Stowe on the same day, but why push it. And Burlington won’t be that far away from our next campground. So we made it a Stowe day. We had the Cold Hollow Cider Mill on our list of stops, like everyone else. When we drove by last Sunday, the traffic getting in was insane with today no different, and it’s a Tuesday!!
It’s just the time of year with apples ripening and the leaves changing. We managed to beat the large crowd about to disembark their tour bus. Whew!! Even before you walk in the door you are knocked over by the smell of apples and maple syrup. The shop is stocked full of games, toys, epicurious goodies, and homegoods. The line must have been a mile long as eager visitors waited their turn to purchase hot apple cider and maple doughnuts. Our purchase…..a bottle of hot cocoa maple powder, a Christmas gift, a freshly baked apple pie and 2 maple doughnuts for the road. I’d call that a success! I even managed to get a photo of the girls making the pies in the kitchen, though I think I annoyed a few of them. Damn paparazzi! They also have a cider beer tasting room adjacent to the store. We went in, but didn’t do a tasting since we’re not big fans of cider beer.
The other day while we were driving toward Stowe, we saw a red oversized barn looking structure that said “coffee bar”. Why so big for a coffee bar?? So this time, we had to make a stop to satisfy our curiosity. The Vermont Artisan Coffee & Tea Co. is a great stop for your morning fix or your afternoon pick me up.
They also offer tasting seminars. But their main schtick is coffee roasting. We took our drinks outside to enjoy the views and tour the grounds and stumbled on their very cool fire pit on the property. We liked the idea so much, we took a photo of it as something we might like to do on the next house we buy.
Once we got into Stowe, we drove to the same parking lot as last time to park the truck, then bike the rec path the short distance to downtown. Downtown Stowe is very small but packs a lot of charm.
And as many of you know, it is the epicenter for some pretty awesome skiing at the Stowe Mountain Resort on Mount Mansfield and Spruce Peak (about 7 miles from downtown). Our first stop was the Old Yard Center Cemetery where the oldest marked grave is from 1798. We didn’t realize that the town of Stowe was that old, but in its earlier years was prime real estate for agriculture and lumber. As many as 8,000 sheep grazed the hills and valleys of this Green Mountain state. Today it’s quite the tourist stop with darling shops, restaurants, coffee bars and museums. We missed the Ski and Snowboard Museum though, only open Fridays & Saturdays. This museum's main objective is to preserve and celebrate Vermont’s skiing and snowboarding legacy. Would have been worth seeing. We found a few birthday and Christmas gift items at Shaw’s General Store which has been around ions. I could have bought one of everything in that store. The clothes are to die for!!
What a beautiful time of day to drive home with the Fallscape. Before dinner, we took one last walk down to the lake, hoping to still catch the last bit of sunshine on those Green Mountains. While we were on the beach, we noticed a kayaker in the distance who was intrigued with Sadie and likewise. He paddled closer to shore where we struck up a conversation about Vermont and our trip. Evidently, we’ve picked one of the nicest spots to camp in all of Vermont as we were told by our new friend Jerry Smith, a full-time resident of Vermont. We noticed many New England residents use the term “full-time” since many seem to flee during those brutal, cold months. Paddling this lake is one of Jerry’s favorite pastimes after a hard day’s work. A beer, sandwich, and a kayak, and he’s good to go. Evidently we had just missed a seaplane taking off from the lake. Darn, that would have been so cool to see. As we proceeded to tell Jerry about our quest to find a new home, he sweetly said, “We’d love to have you join us here, but if you’re used to California weather, you’d really be in for quite a shock, though it is stunning.” We explained that one of our criteria is living in a place with 4 distinct seasons. Vermont doesn’t lack the 4, but it’s too extreme with the length of winters, and a very short but sweet Spring and Fall. Spring is also known as “mud season”, where everything is just one big slushy mess during the ice/snow melt. Good to know. Anyway, these are our favorite moments of the trip when you meet people unexpectedly who just brighten your day. I wish I could say that the best way to end our beautiful day. But the Dodgers beat the Giants 7 to 2 in playoff game #3. Now for the tiebreaker on Thursday with one game to go. 🤞😬