Columbus Day 2022 Trip

Columbus Day 2022 Trip

By Miramar from Oct 10, 2022

For the Columbus Day Weekend trip to the Miramar Lodge in Waitsfield, we had a wonderful time led by trip leader Lauren Franck, seconded by Maureen Cavanaugh. In addition to Lauren and Maureen, twelve members joined the weekend along with six guests, an admirable turnout.

The weather on Saturday in Waitsfield was very sunny with an occasional breeze. Twelve members and guests went with group leader Richard Carey to St. Albans, north of Burlington about 45 minutes for a bike ride on the Missisquoi Valley Rail Trail. Richard and several other riders rented electric bikes, which helped them to complete the 22 mile round trip. Not needing an electric bike was Cesar Aguilar, a new member of Miramar, who regularly rides 70 miles with the New York Cycle Club. Other participants on the ride completed lesser distances and many of us met for fresh brewed beer at 14th Star Brewery in St. Albans. Other weekend participants visited the well known Granite Quarries near Barre, Vermont for a hike with wonderful views of fall’s foliage. As usual we had a delicious dinner prepared by Caroline and Nate.

On Sunday, the weather was cooler, but a group of hearty souls hiked up to the Mad River Glen. Most of the group made it to the top and were able to take the single chair down despite the cool wind in the low 40s. The views of the foliage from the single chair were spectacular. Lunch was at the Mad River Glen base lodge. Later in the day, a group went to Swanson’s Inn Bed and Breakfast for tea, coffee and freshly baked pie offers, ranging from pumpkin to apple to cheesecake. Finally a delicious dinner back at the Lodge, followed by a very interesting book talk and reading by Waitsfield native Lee Hall Dufresne, a former US World Cup ski team racer and nationally ranked tennis player. Afterwards, many of us played a spirited game of LRC won by Yvonne Caracci that helped subsidize her very successful trip to the Stowe Foliage & Fine Arts Festival earlier that day!

Monday morning was cool again, but a group went for a hike at Wu Ledges while others went apple picking. Most of the group departed soon after lunch. All in all, a great weekend!

Labor Day 2002 Trip

Labor Day 2002 Trip

By Miramar from Sept 5, 2022

I lumbered up the Miramar porch with my backpack on, a duffel bag in one hand and my tea set in the other. Before I could set my bag down to plunk in our secret entry code, the door swung open and Bill and Robin greeted me. “We’re kayaking in 10 minutes!” they said.

“I’ll be ready in 5! By the way, my name’s Rick . . .”

With that, our Labor Day weekend was off and running (er — paddling)! Bill, Robin, and I were joined by Regina, Ruth, and Lauren for an easy afternoon exploring Blueberry Lake. Regina and I paired up to explore the inlets along the bank. We stopped whenever a particularly interesting plant or bird caught her naturalist’s eye. Our top find was a Kingfisher bird — a first for me!

The next day was filled with adventures. Robin directed me to the Appalachian Gap Trailhead at the top of Rt. 17. After wandering along it for a while I was surprised to pop out on top of Mad River Glen! From there I kept on going up and up until I found the charming and storied Stark’s Nest at the summit.

Like many fine things these days, our fun was cut short by that wily virus. However, like Helen is fond to remind us, “This is Miramar!!” As we went our separate ways I was touched by the affection members showed to each other. If anything is going to get us through the rest of this pandemic, I think it is just that. The affection we have for this special place and the generations it has touched won’t fix everything, but without it nothing’s worth fixing.