Vermont's Fifth Season, Mud Season Lingering Into May

While the calendar reads spring, it's Vermont's 5th season... mud season.

"Mud season is a reality in Vermont. It's another season. As the snow melts and as the sun shines the trails are saturated with water," said Mike DeBonis. 

DeBonis, the executive director of Green Mountain Club explains you won't be able to him the trails as early as last spring.

"Last year was really dry and warm, so folks were able to get out and hike much earlier. If you go up high enough in our mountains right now there is still snow," said DeBonis.

As of May 3rd, 45 inches of snow is still on top of Mount Mansfield. DeBonis believes that snow will be there until the end of May or June.

This has resulted in closed trails across the state. If you come across a closed trail you will find a posted sign. 

"It extenuates the damage by walking in the wet areas. We always advocate people walk on durable surfaces. What happens when you walk in muddy areas, it degrades the soil. It will take longer to repair," said DeBonis.

Luckily improvements are being seen on Vermont's dirt roads.

"We are trying to address the spots as they come along. But things are starting to dry up, so we are on our way up," said Paul Cerminara.  

Cerminara is the road foreman for the town of Middlesex, and he has heard from drivers that think this year was bad. But was it?

"I think the last couple years we have lucked out. Things have been a lot more mild than we are used to. This year may seem a little more drastic, but I think it's more of what we are used to," said Cerminara. 

Though he still would enjoy a dry stretch of weather to help dry up the remaining muddy patches. 

"No matter how hard you try dirt roads will get muddy. Trying to make sure you mitigate them and deal with them using the best practices is always the best way to go," said Cerminara.


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