Saturday, September 7, 2013

The hills are alive....

So, with a whole day to play with ("Why can't be school on EVERY day" moaned Emily), we had a choice: the South End Art Hop or a visit to Stowe, which is famous for being both the place the Van Trapp family emigrated to after their escape from Austria and the home of Ben and Jerry's icecream. By democratic procedures (I was outvoted 3:!), we made a choice, and headed off to Stowe.

We shall draw a veil over the problems getting there. Stowe is a very cute town - picture perfect, quaint.

On the way there, we visited the famous-in-Vermont cider mill, to drink hot apple cider and taste their apple donuts.

Hot apple cider is heaven. It is non alcoholic, and both sweet and tart - I plan to drink it every day in apple season!

We got lost in a corn maze

And walked along the Stowe hiking/biking trail

 In the stream, there seemed to be a tradition of making rock sculptures

So, of course, the girls had to make some of their own:

All in all, we thought Stowe was quaint and old fashioned. Maybe a little touristy, like Taupo, but nice. Then we drove into the mountains. And the scene certainly changed. Huge, luxurious ski resorts stood amongst the forest and the magnificent mountains. Some of them (resorts and mountains) took our breath away - the sheer size of them was unlike anything we'd seen before.
It was hard to get a photo that fully conveyed the vastness and wealth of these resorts
In the absence of snow, Bruce and the girls ventured up the ski lifts

By this time, it was getting late, and so the ice cream factory will have to wait for another day (cries of outrage from the girls!).  But we liked Stowe, in all its diversity: its combination of the quaint, the historical and the magnificent. We will visit again. And for the skiers among you (I'm looking at you, Sue Fordyce!): I'm no expert, but the ski fields looked glorious: buy your tickets and start planning your winter holiday!

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