Mount Abraham: Battell Trail

The Battell Trail is a vigorous hike up the western flank of Vermont's lowest 4,000 foot peak. The trail to the summit of Mt. Abraham (5.8 miles round-trip) features alpine vegetation, an overnight shelter, and three-state mountain views. 
Trail Activity
Hiking
Length
2.0 miles, One Way
Difficulty
Advanced, Strenuous
Town
Lincoln (VT)
Surface
Packed Earth/Dirt, Rock/Ledge, Boardwalk/Bog Bridging
Pets
Permitted
Fees
No

Description

HIGH USE TRAIL:

This is a busy trail system, especially on weekends between 9AM-4PM. Consider visiting outside of peak periods. Use Trail Finder to identify other nearby trails. If the parking lot is full when you arrive, please choose another trail. 

Learn more about high use trail systems.

A western approach to Mount Abraham, Vermont's fifth highest peak, the Battell Trail intercepts a portion of the Monroe Skyline near tent sites and a log shelter on the slopes of Lincoln Mountain. Aside from rare plants and fabulous views, two sugarbushes are found on the route - the resort valley northeast of the peak and the stand of maples near the trailhead.

Sap lines cross well above your head as the trail modulates up a terraced slope and melds into the uniform pitch of a sidehill traverse as it exits the sugarbush.

Catch a breather along the face of a shallow ridge before the path climbs briefly, then flattens again to span a brook on wooden planks. Just beyond this crossing, the trail directly assaults the western flank of Lincoln Mountain, the elongated parent of Mount Abraham, Mount Ellen, and other lesser peaks. With views flickering through the treetops, the route executes a 0.5-mile zigzag up a sharply angled slope then slants southeast, turning away from the summit toward a col that holds the shelter. A brisk 0.4-mile climb completes the final leg of the Battell Trail that meets a curve in the Long Trail (LT), 0.1 miles south of the campsite and 0.9 miles south of the peak.

From the Battell junction, the white-blazed LT descends 1.7 miles right (south) to Lincoln Gap. Straight ahead, a broad path rises comfortably to tent platforms and an Adirondack-style lean-to set in a glade accompanied by the sound of a gurgling brook. Even if you're not spending the night, the Battell Shelter is a logical place to take a break.

North of the campsite, the LT rolls easily upward on a stony path through crowding evergreens and scrambles over exposed bedrock to disclose emerging views. Be cautious on these slippery faces of stone that carry the trail higher with the aid of sporadic footholds chipped into solid rock. Short, steep scrambles lead into the alpine zone amid reminders to stay on the trail. The path rises through Krummholz vegetation, clambers over boulders, and surfaces atop a peak that greets hikers with a circle of stones and a rare collection of alpine flowers.

Other Information

The summit of Mt. Abraham is above treeline and supports a small community of alpine vegetation, one of only three such communities along the Long Trail. The fragile alpine plants do not tolerate foot traffic. They are damaged when hikers stray from the trail. Above treeline, take care to walk only on the rocks, and please leash dogs. Camping and wood fires are prohibited on the summit of Mt. Abraham.

Trail Manager

For additional information, visit the Green Mountain Club website, or contact:

Green Mountain Club

Green Mountain Club
4711 Waterbury-Stowe Rd.
Waterbury Center, VT 05677
Phone: (802) 244-7037
gmc@greenmountainclub.org
View website
US Forest Service
Phone: (802) 767-4261
View website

Trail Tips

Plan Ahead and Prepare
Avoid hypothermia, even in warm weather, by limiting your sweat and exposure to cold water. Bring warm and dry clothes in case the shivers set in.
Legend
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Trailhead Information

In the center of Lincoln Village, turn north onto unmarked Quaker Street at a stone marker and directly adjacent to the Lincoln General Store. After 0.6 miles, turn right (east) onto Forest Road 350 at a second sign for the Battell Trail, and stay on this gravel road ignoring turns that branch right and left. After 2.1 miles, FR 350 narrows to one lane and leads to a parking space across the road from the trailhead.

Click on a parking icon to get custom directions
Please Log In or Create Account to add comments.
adkjoe
December 18, 2017
Battell trail is a monster in the winter, but well worth it. Bring snow shoes and crampons if you plan to summit. 2.0 miles to the shelter and .9 from the shelter to the summit. Be prepared for a rock scramble/climb to get to the summit. One of my favorite hikes!
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