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Vermont Best Outdoor Activities 2012

Vermont Best Outdoor Activities 2012
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BEST PLACE TO LET ‘ER RIP
Okemo Mountain Timber Ripper, Ludlow
On the Ripper, billed as “Vermont’s first roller coaster,” riders rocket down 3,100 feet of curves and straightaways on the face of Okemo Mountain. Control your own two-person cart as it hurtles along steel rails at speeds of up to 25 mph. 77 Okemo Ridge Road. 802-228-4041; okemo.com

BEST EQUINE EXPERIENCE
Vermont Icelandic Horse Farm Treks, Fayston
Mount up for two- to five-day guided treks through the Mad River Valley astride beautiful Icelandic horses. After riding, enjoy a fine meal and a hot-tub soak before tucking into a cozy featherbed at the Mad River Inn in nearby Waitsfield. Rates: $600 (two days/two nights)-$1,495 (five days/five nights) per person, including all meals and double-occupancy lodging. Guided day rides ($50-$100) and full-day rides ($190, including lunch) also available. 3061 North Fayston Road. 802-496-7141; icelandichorses.com

BEST PLACE TO REJUVENATE
New Life Hiking Spa at the Inn of the Six Mountains, Killington
If it’s healthy or relaxing, chances are you can do it at this destination spa, renowned for its hiking program and healthful cuisine. Not up for a six-mile trek? Opt for the gentle nature stroll. Rates: from $229, including room, meals, and hiking program. 2617 Killington Road. 866-298-5433, 802-353-2954; newlifehikingspa.com

BEST BREEZE THROUGH THE TREES
ArborTrek Zip Line Canopy Tour, Jeffersonville
Fly through Smugglers’ Notch on a zipline and sky-bridge network that threads the forest canopy for nearly a mile, at heights of up to 73 feet. A pair of knowledgeable guides accompanies each small group; reservations required. 1239 Edwards Road. 802-465-1818, 802-644-9300; arbortrek.com

BEST RIDE ON THE CLYDE
Clyde River Recreation, West Charleston
Paddle the Northeast Kingdom’s placid, scenic Clyde River on a three-hour, self-guided canoe or kayak trip. Rentals include shuttle service. Boats are also available at Gardner Park in Newport and on Lake Memphremagog’s South Bay. 2355 Route 105. 802-895-4333; clyderiverrecreation.com

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