Killington Peak-Bucklin Trail

Mendon, Vermont

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6 Reviews
4 out of 5
A five- to six-hour round-trip to the second highest summit in Vermont.
Hiking Vermont: 60 of Vermont’s Greatest Hiking Adventures


Hiking Vermont: 60 of Vermont’s Greatest Hiking Adventures

by Larry Pletcher (Updated and revised by Tom Seymour) (Falcon Guides)

A five- to six-hour round-trip to the second highest summit in Vermont.

© 2008 Larry Pletcher (Updated and revised by Tom Seymour)/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Mendon
Distance: 7
Elevation Gain: 2,500 feet
Trail Type: Out-and-back
Skill Level: Moderate
Duration: 5-6 hours
Local Maps: USGS Killington peak, Pico Peak, and Rutland quads.
Topo Map: Killington Peak-Bucklin Trail Topographic Map
Guide Book: Hiking Vermont: 60 of Vermont’s Greatest Hiking Adventures Guide Book
Driving Directions: View Directions
Trail Directions: View Guide

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Recent Trail Reviews


This trail is NOT like Camel's Hump or Mansfield. It's a meandering stroll through a meadow-like path with seemingly no elevation gain for what seems like 1 1/2 to 2 miles. When you hit the blue arrow blaze on a rock pointing you to the right and up you'll start to feel the gain and it will be steady and straight until you reach the top. You don't have the luxury of up and down trails to rest your legs and no switchbacks to frustrate you. Just you and a straight line to the top. The trail was relatively dry for having rained a couple of days earlier and if had more recently or had been raining then this might be far more taxing; and slippery. When you reach Cooper Lodge you've intersected The Long Trail by a tenth of a mile and water is a short distance away. The lodge obviously sees it's share of cheaters coming down from the peak via the Gondola and wears the scars to prove it but it was decent and you can't beat the location. After passing the tent pads you've got two tenths to go and you'll staircase climb on your hands over large rocks almost the entire distance until you reach the over-crowded summit. Holiday weekend, foliage season, beautiful (if mid twenties and windy can be beautiful) weather had the peak crowded from K-1'ers. Overall a great hike on a great day but not as draining as I would have liked. I only get to Vermont once a year for these trips and I like to remember them as exhausting. Agree - Radio/Cell/TV equipment detracts from the peak. Agree - Trekking poles would be useless but my 5 foot hiking stick was VERY helpful. Agree - Could be nasty at the top AND bottom in rain. Agree - Book has this at 5 hours and that's accurate, if you're very fit this can be done in 4 hours or less.


Surprisingly easy hike compared with Mansfield and Camel's Hump. Nice easy first mile (meadows, but thankfully no sign of poison ivy). Uphill climb from the lodge was strenuous but only a real burn for the last 0.2 mi. Very beautiful hike and striking views from the top. Several groups of tourists on top from the gondola, which was surreal because we became part of the wildlife attraction for them. Ended the day thinking the hike was a great idea.

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