As 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 controlling the number of people on the trail at the same time, we hope to enable all visitors to experience the beauty and serenity of our natural world.
Visit Trails & Maps to learn about the Pinnacle’s 26-mile trails system.
Please remember that trail conditions may be slippery. Avoid staying out too long or relying on cell phones, which may not always work.
Our free maps and programs are a great way to introduce Pinnacle lands to friends, relatives, or neighbors. 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.
This website is the best place to check for news, upcoming events, and other information. Please send your trail photos, hiking tidbits, or trail challenges to [email protected] so we can know what’s happening on Pinnacle lands and where we need to make improvements.
May you enjoy every lovely moment on our trails!
Sun., Sept. 26, 2021: West Hill Grinder. Starts at 10 a.m. A biking fundraiser for WHPA organized by West Hill Shop in Putney, VT. Bike gravel roads and forest trails through Putney, Dummerston, Brookline, Athens, Westminster, and Brattleboro. All routes begin at High Meadows Farm. Find more details on West Hill Shop's website, or call 802-387-5718.
Sun., Oct. 10, 2021: Harvest Festival. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Visit the Windmill Hill Pinnacle Association's table at the Harvest Festival at The Putney School, 418 Houghton Brook Road, Putney, VT.
Sun., Oct. 24, 2021: Athens Dome Loop Walk. 12:30-4:30 p.m. Meet at 12:30 at the Nature Museum parking lot in Grafton Village for carpooling, as parking is limited at Turner Hill. Bring water and snacks, good hiking footwear. Weather dependent. Email Camilla Roberts to register, or call her at 802-869-1388.
This loop is an estimated 4 miles, from Turner Hill in Grafton. It starts and ends at the Turner Hill old homestead area. We start up the Bear Hill trail (steep) then head east on the Pinnacle Athens Dome trail, through varied woods including the spruce swamp area in the more remote area of Athens Dome, along an outcrop of the oldest geologic rock with Umbillicarium (Tripe) lichen, to old Kidder Hill Road. We turn south there to the height of the road and site of the legendary “Yellow House," then follow an old woods road west from there back to the Turner Hill homestead area. This is a long and beautiful fall walk after the leaves have fallen, to be able to see deeply into the forested terrain, no bugs, and cooler temperatures.
Sun., Nov. 7, 2021: Bald Hill Hike. 1-3 p.m. Meet at the Covered Bridge Road kiosk in Westminster for a woodland hike. We will be joined by Roger Haydock, a local geology enthusiast, to learn about the geology of Twin Falls, one of the sites we'll visit. RSVP to Vanessa Stern, 802-463-4948 or by email, and please include your phone number in case plans change due to weather. Don't forget to check your watch, because Daylight Savings ends on Nov. 7 this year.
Sun., April 25, 2021, 4 p.m. WHPA Annual Meeting.
WHPA members and supporters joined us for our annual meeting on Zoom. Board president Silos Roberts and other board members shared updates on our conservation work, and two short videos premiered about the history of conserving the Pinnacle Ridgeline.
If you missed our annual meeting, you can watch the WHPA history videos below:
Sat., November 2, 2019, 12:30-3:30 p.m. Historic sites on Athens Dome.
Walk to the historic sites on Windmill Hill Pinnacle Association properties in Athens and Grafton See the remains of the historic Goodridge and Smith Soapstone quarries, quarry pools, cellar holes, mill foundation and old roads. This area, which is adjacent to the Turner Hill Wildlife Management Area, has significant wildlife habitat including wetlands and very productive beech/oak/cherry mast stands. IF it is a good year for beech nuts, we should find evidence of black bears feeding in the trees. The hike is moderate, there may be some water in the old roads depending on previous weather, water tight boots recommended. Hike leaders are Camil Roberts and Andrew Toepfer. Please register by email at [email protected] or [email protected] Meet at Athens Pond in Athens on Route 35 (6 1/2 miles north of Townshend or 3 1/2 miles south of Cambridgeport on Route 35.)
Sat., October 12, 2019, 1-4 p.m. Fall Foliage Walk on Bald Hill.
Vanessa Stern, member of the Bald Hill Committee and WHPA Board, will lead this riverside walk along the gorgeous Saxtons River, where hikers can venture down to get a closer look at the rock basins and Twin Falls. Then we will climb to a summit with a good view of the surrounding area. Meet at the Bald Hill kiosk on Covered Bridge Road in Westminster. Wear waterproof shoes. Contact Vanessa Stern at 802-463 4948 to register, get information, or check on the weather.
Sun., September 22, 2019, starting at 10 or 11 a.m. (depending upon route). Annual West Hill Grinder.
Organized by the West Hill Shop in Putney, this event is a thank-you benefit to WHPA for its 25-mile trail system. Several different routes offer a variety of rural biking challenges for intermediate and advanced bicyclists. Distances range from 19-45 miles and wind through Westminster, Athens, Brookline, Dummerston, Brattleboro and Putney on town dirt roads, Class-4 woods roads, and Pinnacle hiking trails, with a bit of pavement here and there. New this year is a “smooth gravel” route being planned for those looking for a longer ride without technical features like single track. Visit www.bikereg.com. Search for West Hill Grinder for information on routes, bike recommendations, equipment requirements, prices, food, and registration. For questions, email [email protected] or call 802-387-5718.
September 14, 2019, Saturday, 10:45 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Accessibility Day.
This is a once-a-year opportunity for a vehicle ride to a remote and beautiful site for lunch. The destination sits on the Windmill ridgeline between the Pinnacle overlook and Paul’s Ledges and has spectacular views 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 Tony Coven at 802-387-6650.
July 14, 2019, Sunday, 3-5 p.m. Healing Walk. WHPA Trustee and energetic healer, John Foster of Vermont Healing will lead a meditative walk on Dunn Nature Trail. The reflective walk will include poems or other readings and offer opportunities for both contemplation and sharing. A guiding premise of this walk is that it’s essential to be still, to quiet the everyday mind. Meet at the Dunn Nature Sanctuary on Bemis Hill Road. Register at [email protected] or 802-451-6277. The Living Earth Action Group is the co-sponsor.
June 22, 2019, Saturday, 9:30 AM-noon. Over the Hill Hike!
Enjoy a 4-mile hike on the Jamie Latham Trail, past an old beaver pond and stone walls, through beautiful hardwood stands, with a stop to enjoy the view from the renovated Pinnacle Cabin. Bring water, lunch, snack, insect repellent, sunscreen. Meet at Westminster West Church to split cars and carpools between the start at Latham Trailhead/parking area and finish at Holden Trailhead/parking area. Register with Tony Coven at 802-387-6650.