This ride has been is adapted from Mountain Biking Northern New
England (formerly The Mountain Biker's Guide to Northern New
England), by Paul Angiolillo. It's a compilation of sixty rides
in VT, NH, and ME. A companion volume, Mountain Biking Southern
New England, covers MA, CT, and RI. Both are available in outdoor
stores and bike shops or from Menasha Ridge Press,
1-800-247-9437. Paul Angiolillo can be reached at 781-893-1341
(Waltham, MA) or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can ride anywhere from five to about thirty miles on backroads
along the scenic ridge known as Rochester North Hollow. After climbing
from quaint Rochester, head north for a longer ride or south for a
shorter one. Return to Rochester by descending to paved VT 100, or by
doubling back. Be ready to do some climbing on smooth dirt roads. Once
you're on the ridge, you can crank along at a fast pace, or take in
the scenery--silver-sided barns and farms, fields with grazing
animals, and colorful foliage and edible berries in the fall.
Along the way, you might visit several sites. Two miles north of
Rochester, turn west on Quarry Road to reach a working marble
quarry. In Granville (ten miles north of Rochester) there's scenic
Granville Reservation, which contains Moss Glen Falls. A three-mile
side trip off VT 100, on VT 125 East, will bring you to Texas
Falls. Or cool off at a swimming hole near the bridge just north of
Rochester on VT 100.
- Rochester, north of the intersection of VT 100 and VT 73.
- Elevation Change
- Rochester is located at 900'. The ride begins with a moderately
steep climb of 500'. From there, it rolls over small hills, with an
optional steep climb to the top of Mt. Cushman, adding on 1000'.
- All services are located in Rochester, including a bike shop, an
American Youth Hostel (AYH) lodge (for all ages), a bed-and-breakfast
inn, an inn managed by mountain bikers, and inexpensive restaurants.
- A Green Mountain National Forest office on VT 100 in Rochester
sells USGS maps. Green Mountain Bicycle Service in Rochester displays
a wall of topographical maps.
- Finding the trail
- Begin riding in Rochester on VT 100.
- Sources of additional information
- Green Mountain National Forest Office, Rochester Ranger District,
VT 100, RD 1, Box 108, Rochester, VT 05767, (802) 767-4777. Green
Mountain Bicycle Service, P.O. Box 253, Rochester VT 05767, (802)
767-4464. Located in the center of quaint Rochester, on VT 100, this
small business rents, repairs, and sells mountain bikes. It also
specializes in guiding individuals and groups on leisurely and more
challenging excursions. Drop in for a chat. The Huntington House Inn
on the Green in Rochester, (802) 767-4868, is owned by a mountain
- Notes on the trail
- You can climb fairly steeply to North Hollow Road on Bethel
Mountain Road and Brook St., beginning at the Green in Rochester. A
less steep climb begins on a dirt road 1.5 miles north of Rochester on
VT 100. Turn right just after a large house and barn and before a
bridge. After a half mile, fork to the right, then right again at the
next fork (although either road leads to North Hollow Road). When you
reach North Hollow Road, go in either direction (north or south),
depending on how far you want to ride. Whatever loop you choose, a
mountain range to the east and VT 100 to the west will keep you from
straying too far. For a day-long excursion, ride north to
Granville. Otherwise simply turn west at a crossroad and descend to VT
For the more adventurous, there's an optional out-and-back ride up a
mountain. Just east of Rochester, turn off North Hollow Road at an
abandoned house onto a road that leads eastward to Mt. Cushman. Ask at
the local bike shop about this and other rides in the area.