Bristol, Vermont

Vermont is a brisk and beautiful state that is filled with less popular summer activities. Of course there winter skiing is good and all but the Green Mountain offers New Yorkers like us a chance to break away from the summer heat and still have fun outdoors. This trip was basically another equine excursion like in Victor, CO, however, this time we were riding Icelandic horses. These horses are smaller than your average horse but can work twice as hard. They are very shaggy horses and have a very unique gate called a tolt, which is something between a trot and a cantor but just looks and feels like they are wiggling their butt side to side very rapidly. It is hilarious to look at but really comfortable and fun.

Shih Tzus conquering the hike up a tall mountain! (And yes, they hiked themselves!)

The drive up to Vermont can be long and tedious so you need to break it up with some scenic routes, which are often indicated as alternatives to highways with white street signs, also popping into mom & pop eateries instead of chain restaurants will help you feel like your already on vacation and not just commuting. This trip literally felt like we were driving to the ends of the earth because we were staying in a secluded Bed & Breakfast up dirt road after dirt road. Once we got there we realized how worth it the journey was. After a delicious breakfast complete with home made scones we headed out early the next morning to the Icelandic horse farm a few towns over. We had a good long trail ride through the valleys and peaks of the open country. We missed the Boyos but we knew they were being babysat by our host so we took the opportunity to do some falconry and archery, activities too dangerous with pups about! The following morning we went for a run through the fields and farms then later went riding again.

Checking out the neighbors. "Excuse me sir, do you know the way back home?"

Blessu loves 'em white horses, especially when they are fellow furry-baby icelandic white horses!

When we got back we decided to walk the Boyos to the alpaca farm we spotted during our run. Blessu and Shuie really really wanted to cross the fence to have a close sniff and look at the new interesting creature but alas we did not let them. The following day we went for a vigorous hike up the mountain on Sunset Trail. We got a few looks in the parking lot from people with Labs and Collies who saw us with our Shih Tzus but the Boyos did us proud, climbing up every step by themselves, frequently telling the world “I was here” on the way the best way they know how. After the hike we were all hot and sweaty so we decided to cool off at a waterfall we discovered en route. We decided to challenge the AdventurePups a bit further and have them swim across the stream and we got excellent footage I suggest you, the reader, check out on the multimedia section. The following day after our run and breakfast we set out to the Ben & Jerry’s ice cream factory and Cabot cheese outlet. This was barely worth the drive, in fact, we actually crossed the street to buy ice cream elsewhere due to the overcrowding. The last day we went riding one last time and had another great experience but were sad to leave the loyal horses and the two German Shepherds, Wotan and Jäger, whom the boyos and ourselves grew very fond of; we gave them plenty of treats though to take the edge off. On the way home we took plenty of detours hunting down the famous Kissing Bridges of Vermont.

Family photo by The Kissing Bridge.

Worst part: hiking to a lake but spotting a snake as soon as we got there and getting out of dodge. Best part: letting the boys be boys out in nature.

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