The Cornerstone

They don’t call it the Kingdom for nothing. This upper-right corner of Vermont boasts down-the-street access to huge networks of singletrack, bomber lift-access runs at a friendly local resort and amazing terrain, as East Burke resident ripper and suspension guru Alex McAndrew samples here during a recent lap down Rude Awakening on Burke Mountain. DJI, 1/1000 sec, f/4, ISO 100

The Cornerstone The Northeast Kingdom's Foundational Formula For Success

A century-old firetower stands atop northeastern Vermont’s Burke Mountain,offering a 360-degree view of the highest ranges in the northeastern United States.

To the west, the Adirondack Mountains loom in the distance beyond Mount Mansfield. The White Mountains stack up to the east, broadly punctuated by Mount Washington, the northeast’s tallest peak.

Though Vermont is known as the Green Mountain State, the soil composition on Burke Mountain shares more characteristics with the neighboring Granite State of New Hampshire. Looking out from the skeletal frame perched high upon a big slab of bedrock, one can feel the wind drifting through the cracks between old wooden planks. The surrounding landscape is mostly forest covered hills, with the occasional field quilting the valleys in between. It’s hard to even spot a town on the horizon.

It might not be visible at first glance, but the surrounding hills cradle a deeply rooted culture of mountain biking that has embedded itself into the region’s social fabric, emanating from Burke Mountain and imprinting itself on people of all ages. Known as the Northeast Kingdom, this region is renowned for its world-famous Kingdom Trails network. But the entire area boasts a rapidly expanding array of purpose-built singletrack, including lift-accessed bike park runs on Burke Mountain and two challenging new shuttle tracks from the summit. Add to this the ever-creative trail system in the nearby Victory Hill Sector and it’s practically impossible for a mountain biker to ever be bored.

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