Vermonters encouraged to start the new year with a hike

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MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — The Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation is encouraging Vermonters to celebrate the new year with a first day hike.

Entry to Vermont’s 55 state parks is free on New Year’s Day and all winter long.

The first day hikes will be different this year because of the coronavirus pandemic. State park officials are not offering in-person guided hikes and instead have chosen self-guided hikes around the state.

Among the hikes selected are the Quechee Loop Trail in Quechee State Park; the Reservoir Trail in Woodford State Park in Bennington; the Button Bay Point Trail at Button Bay State Park in Ferrisburgh and the Marsh Brook Nature Trail in Lake Carmi State Park in Enosburg Falls.

Hikers are advised to dress for the weather, bring beverages and snacks and snowshoes if the snow is deep and to follow Vermont’s COVID-19 outdoor recreation health and safety guidelines.

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