Hike to Ober Hill Gorge and Cellar Hole – Saturday, October 28, 1-4 PM

A guided hike on the new Brelsford property to see some of its manmade and natural features. Read more here.

Requests for Pinnacle Trail Hikers

As nature beckons and Pinnacle lands – the Holden Trail in particular – become a more popular destination for schools and other large groups, we ask hikers to follow the guidelines below.  By trying to control the number of people on the trail at the same time, we hope to enable all users to experience the beauty and serenity of our natural world.

  • Groups of 15 or more are asked to contact Tony Coven at 802-387‐6650.
  • Large groups are encouraged to break into groups of 4‐8 while hiking to allow hikers to experience the many wonders that Pinnacle has to offer.
  • Please observe a strict low‐impact, carry‐in/carry out, leave‐no‐trace policy.
  • An outdoor fire is permitted upon request only at the Pinnacle summit, with prior authorization from Westminster Town Fire Warden Cole Streeter, 802‐722‐3178.  Please carry in your own firewood.

Visit Trails & Maps to direct you to other choices of trails to investigate within Pinnacle’s 20-mile trails system.

The days of daily mysteries and awakenings are here! Every hour of daylight seems to bring new wonders and appreciation for this beautiful time of year. We need to make the most of each opportunity to be outside and seek new ways to interact with nature.

As your eyes spot emerging details on even the most familiar trail, please remember that conditions may be slippery. Always avoid staying out too long or relying on cell phones, which may not always work.

Our helpful maps and free programs make great introductions to someone new, an old friend, or a young relative or neighbor. Your personal touch can make all the difference in opening up a new world of wonder and delight to nature lovers from near and far.

As always, this website is the best place to check for news, upcoming events, or other information. And we encourage you to send your seasonal trail photos and hiking tidbits or trail challenges to whpa@sover.net so we can know what’s happening on Pinnacle lands, who is enjoying them, or where we need to make improvements.

May you enjoy every lovely moment on our trails!

Ober Hill Gorge

Ober Hill Gorge

Upcoming Events

Weekend Strolls, Workdays, and More

October 28, Saturday, 1-4 PM. Walk to Ober Hill Gorge and Old Homestead Cellar Hole. The walk, featuring the newly acquired Brelsford property, will start at the Bemis Hill Road trailhead, walk mostly downhill through rich mixed hardwoods to the long gorge, with its gurgling stream and charming waterfalls, and to the homestead complex with its remains of stonewall paddocks and a barn. Continuing then north on the trail to the Route 35 trailhead area, this walk is a great way to learn about the northern end of the Windmill Ridge trail system. A car shuttle will be arranged to return participants to cars parked at the starting place on Bemis Hill Road. Bring water, snack, and clothing appropriate for the weather, which can be chilly in late October. Pre-registration is required to plan for the shuttle by contacting Camilla Roberts at 802-869-1388 or camil@vermontel.net.

Click here for a map showing WHPA Access Points.

Past Events

September 14, 7-8:30 PM. Wet Sneakers and Muddy Clothes: The Importance of Nature-Based Play and Education. Well-known author, teacher, and nature activist David Sobel will discuss why children need to play outside in nature for their own well-being and for their future stewardship of the earth. Presented by WHPA; co-sponsored by The Nature Museum, Putney Mountain Association, and Windham Regional Woodlands Association; and supported by the Bellows Falls and Springfield Rotary Clubs. At Compass School, 7892 US-5, Westminster, VT.

September 16, Saturday, 10:45 AM-4 PM. Accessibility Day. This year’s site is a new one for this once-a-year opportunity for a vehicle ride to a remote and beautiful site for lunch. The private property, owned by a friend of WHPA, sits on the Windmill Ridgeline between the Pinnacle and Paul’s Ledges, and the spectacular view offers a wide deep vista to the ski mountains of Mt. Snow, Stratton, Bromley, Okemo, and beyond. If you’re an adult who has difficulty walking, this is your chance to visit a rural spot with a grandchild or friend. The free program’s popularity and need for four-wheel-drive or other appropriate vehicles make advance registrations a MUST for riders. Hikers do not need to pre-register. Bring water, bag lunch, and sweater for chilly weather. Meet at Westminster West Church at 10:45 AM to carpool. Register with Bev Major at 802-387-5737 or Elaine Gordon at 802-869-6103. Held in sunny or cloudy weather only; canceled in rain or bad weather.

September 24, Sunday - West Hill Grinder
Diny and Jim Sweitzer of the West Hill Shop in Putney, VT, are making the 2017 West Hill Grinder a biking fundraiser for WHPA. Three different routes offer a variety of rural biking challenges for intermediate and advanced bicyclists. Distances range from 19-39 miles and wind through Westminster, Athens, Brookline, and Putney on town dirt roads, Class-4 woods roads, and Pinnacle hiking trails, with a bit of pavement here and there. The easiest West-West Loop lacks standard technical challenges. Individual, student, and family rates include lunch catered by John Labine of Taco Barn after the event. Start and finish will be at High Meadows Farm in Putney, VT, which offers water, facilities, protected seating, and onsite parking.

October 7, Saturday, 7-9 PM. Moonlight Hike at Bald Hill. Join Vanessa Stern, Bald Hill Committee Chair and WHPA Board Member, for this special, free, full-moon experience where even familiar features look different and more mysterious in the moonlight. Meet at the Covered Bridge kiosk at 232 Covered Bridge Road in Westminster. For information and required reservation, contact 802-463-4948 or davidandvanessa@gmail.com.