Fall Foliage Guide to Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom

Perhaps one of the Northeast Kingdom’s most famous characteristics is the breathtaking colors that blanket our rugged landscape in the fall. Usually starting around mid-September, the dense forests covering the Green Mountains (kind of ironic right now, don’t you think?) provide ample opportunity for some of the absolute best fall foliage viewing in the country. We’ve outlined a few prime locations where you’ll catch sight of the vibrant reds, oranges, and yellows of autumn in the secluded reaches of the Northeast Kingdom.

Darling Hill Road runs between Lyndonville and East Burke. On it, you’ll catch views of Burke Mountain, Mount Pisgah, Mount Hor, Kirby Mountain, and Lake Willoughby. The scenic drive is a little out of the way from Highland Lodge, but if you find yourself near this route on your travels during your time in the Northeast Kingdom, it’s worth driving along just to soak in the view.

There are thousands of lakes and ponds in the Northeast Kingdom. In fact, our region has the highest density of freshwater lakes and ponds in the entire state. With the picturesque views duplicated in the reflection on the water, these spots are guaranteed to take your breath away. Take a drive to Lake Willoughby or go a little further to Jobs Pond, about an hour northeast of Highland Lodge. Or, if you’re not up for a drive, enjoy the beautiful view of Lake Caspian without going anywhere!

Located near Brownington, Prospect Hill Observatory is a hilltop gazebo that is also part of the Brownington Historic District. From its elevated vantage point, you’ll have a panoramic view of the landscape around you, from Lake Willoughby to Lake Memphremagog in the north. Nearby, you’ll find the Old Stone House Museum and the museum visitor’s center within the Alexander Twilight House. Pick up a walking tour guide of the Brownington Historic District if you have time for a stroll before heading up to the Observatory for fall foliage viewing. For more information visit the website.

Jay Peak can be accessed via Vermont’s only tram for views of the Northeast Kingdom and Quebec from an elevation of almost 4,000 feet. You can also take a chairlift ride at Burke Mountain to see views of Lake Willoughby, Mount Pisgah, Mount Hor, Mount Mansfield, and Mount Washington in New Hampshire. The Burke Mountain Auto Toll Road is open until late October and will take you to the 3,267-foot summit as well.

Peacham is an excellent destination for fall foliage views in the Northeast Kingdom. Besides the steepled Peacham Congregational Church, the village’s rolling hills and mountains provide that characteristically perfect New England scenery. Don’t forget your phone or camera for this one!