Discovery Bicycle Tours - 1.800.257.2226
Sunday: Arrival Day
Monday: 24 or 34 mi (39 or 55 km)
Tuesday: 30 or 40 mi (49 or 65 km)
Wednesday: 23 or 39 mi (37 or 62 km)
Thursday: 26 or 40 mi (42 or 65 km)
Friday: 17 mi (28 km)
Average Daily Mileage: 27 mi (44 km)
Average Daily Mileage with Options: 35 mi (57 km)
Thursday: Easier to Intermediate
5 nights of lodging (double occupancy); 5 breakfasts and 4 dinners (you are on your own for dinner one night in Middlebury); detailed maps and itineraries; 2 experienced guides; full van support; cycling at your own pace along routes that we have carefully selected and continually improve; plus assorted epiphanies and serendipities
We urge you to purchase travel insurance as soon as possible. You can purchase insurance online at www.CSATravelPro.com (enter code 82667246) or call them at 800-348-9505. CSA Travel Protection is recommended by Consumer Reports. Canadian citizens can also purchase travel insurance at www.travelguard.ca (866-648-8422).You can also compare policies at www.insuremytrip.com.
To cover pre-existing conditions (see below) through CSA Travel Protection, the insurance may be purchased at any time up to 24 hours after you make your final payment. CSA also offers a unique "cancel for any reason" coverage option that must be purchased within 24 hours of making your initial tour deposit.
The need for travel insurance cannot be over-emphasized.
For a small percentage of your travel and tour costs, you are
covered if you need to cancel or interrupt your vacation with
us due to a number of circumstances beyond your control,
including (most importantly) if a health-related problem
arises affecting you or even a non-traveling member of your family.
As you know, most airline fares are non-refundable, and
travel insurance is especially important since Discovery Bicycle Tour's contractual obligations with our inns make it impossible for us to refund your monies anytime within 60
days prior to your trip despite the compelling nature of your
IMPORTANT! If you have a currently existing condition that might make you unable to take the trip (such as a knee injury, a history of specific medical problems, or a currently ill family member), it is essential that you sign up anytime up to 24 hours after you make your final payment in order to qualify for coverage for these pre-existing conditions.This coverage adds about 2% to your premium. Please refer to www.CSATravelPro.com for details.
Arrival day. On Sunday and Monday nights we delight in the friendly welcome of Dominic and Molly Francis at the Shoreham Inn, an authentic stagecoach stop that dates back to the 1790's. This beautifully restored inn brims over with warmth, hospitality, the aroma of good home cooking, and the comfortable aura of earlier times.
Sunday Night: SHOREHAM INN
The area around Shoreham is perfect for cycling and is famous for its tidy apple orchards, grand views of Lake Champlain, pastures with grazing sheep and cows, and the classic beauty and simplicity of the surrounding towns and villages. Today visit the pretty town of Orwell, site of one of Ethan Allen's most daring Revolutionary War exploits. Monday we ride through quiet farmland to the pretty village of Orwell, stop at Norton's Gallery (with his world famous whimsical wood carvings) and then bike down to the shores of Lake Champlain. We take a short scenic ferry ride crossing Lake Champlain to Fort Ticonderoga where we are treated to a professionally guided tour (and picnic) so you will get a full experience of this historic military fort. Fort Ticonderoga guards the historic portage between Lake Champlain and Lake George and commands control of a narrow neck of the lake that was one of the major inland waterways. Here were some defining moments in early American history, including several skirmishes during the French and Indian wars. At the beginning of the American Revolution, Fort Ticonderoga was the scene of America's first major victory when Ethan Allen and Benedict Arnold shared command of a successful attack on the British-held fort in the early morning hours of May 10, 1775.
Riding is 24 or 34 miles (39 or 55 km) and we rate it as easier. There is an optional loop ride from the fort into the rural New York countryside.
Monday Night: SHOREHAM INN
Tuesday we enjoy spectacular vistas and rural scenery as we ride across the Otter Creek on the Salisbury Covered bridge. Then a long downhill leads us to the shores of beautiful Lake Dunmore where we can picnic by the lake at Branbury State Park and take a nice walk to the Falls of Lana. Our route from here takes us to Forestdale and includes the energetic option of cycling up Brandon Gap where we are rewarded with spectacular 100 mile views. In Brandon we enjoy the fine food, country elegance, lovely rooms and delightful gardens of Doug and Shelly Sawyer's Lilac Inn, a restored Greek Revival Mansion that is now on the National Historic Register. You will also enjoy Brandon, a village of tree-shaded streets and a marvelous mix of Federal, Greek Revival and Victorian homes. This friendly village was recently proclaimed by Yankee Magazine as one of the best places to live in all New England.
Riding is 30 or 40 miles (49 or 65 km) and we rate the day as Intermediate. There are a number of options including a rewarding ride up Brandon Gap.
Tuesday Night: LILAC INN
Wednesday's ride takes us to Middlebury, our home for the last two nights. Plan to arrive early enough to join us at Otter Creek Brewery where we enjoy delicious appetizers while tasting several of their wonderful craft brews. There are more micro breweries per capita in Vermont than in any other state, and Otter Creek is one of the best!
Part of the pleasure of this tour is exploring the town of Middlebury. Former grist and woolen mills now house an excellent collection of sophisticated craft shops and galleries, and in your wanderings you will find excellent woodworking, pottery, jewelry, photography, antiques and folk art. This is also the home of Middlebury College, with its distinctive campus, broad manicured lawns and handsome buildings fashioned from locally quarried gray stone.
Our last two nights we are guests at the Swift House Inn, once the elegant home of Governor John W. Stewart, it is now a prestigious inn, with lovely bedrooms filled with antiques, comfortable common rooms, a sauna and steam room, and an intimate pub.
Riding is 23 or 39 miles (39 or 62 km) with a lovely loop ride option along Munger Road. We rate today's ride as Easier.
Wednesday Night: SWIFT HOUSE INN
On Thursday, once we cross the Pulp Mill Covered Bridge (one of the few two-lane covered bridges in existence) the town of Middlebury almost immediately gives way to wide fertile valleys dotted with productive dairy farms and apple orchards. The roads wind through pastures and cultivated fields, while in the distance we are treated with spectacular views of the Adirondacks and Green Mountains. We pass the Morgan Horse Farm and then follow the Otter Creek to the "city" of Vergennes, and to beautiful Button Bay on Lake Champlain. Button Bay, a 253-acre park, is located on a bluff overlooking 130-mile long Lake Champlain. A gorgeous nature trail leads to a nature center and to a tree-shaded point where we often take a swim. Today also includes a tour of the fascinating Lake Champlain Maritime Museum where you can learn the history of this historically significant lake, see a replica of the 1776 gunboat Philadelphia II, explore some of the lake's 300+ historic shipwrecks and discover the lives of the Native Americans and the early French explorers who explored this area. Tonight we have a superb dinner at the Swift House Inn.
Riding is 26 or 40 miles (42 or 65 km). We rate the day as Easier to Intermediate and you have an energetic option that includes a visit to Chimney Point.
Thursday Night: SWIFT HOUSE INN
Our last day's ride takes us through the Middlebury College campus into lush rolling farmland and through West Cornwall. Our route takes us past some of Vermont's finest apple orchards as we wend our way down into Shoreham.
Riding today is 17 miles (28 km). We rate this day as Easier due to its shortness, but there is an intermediate hill to climb before getting to the downhill ride into Shoreham.