We had talked about doing an inn to inn hiking trip for some time. Perhaps doing a trip along a single long distance trail like the Superior Hiking Trail in Minnesota where we would move from inn to inn every day or so; or going from one inn to the next and doing totally distinct day hikes on a variety of trails like we are now doing here in Vermont’s Green Mountains.
I arranged the trip with Country Inns Along the Trail and we were set for our 3 nights and days trip. All we had to do was get ourselves to each inn and the innkeepers would take care of the rest. Getting to the inns was easy enough (as long as you have a car). We arrived in Albany, New York right on time via our Southwest airlines flight and were soon driving through the rain towards Vermont. The drive was supposed to take about 2 hours and that is what it ended up taking. We found Crisanver House without any significant trouble. It is hard to tell now but this place sits on a lot of land. Built originally in the very early 1800s the land was once used as farm land until around 1920 when some people from New York bought the property, renovated things with an eye towards making a country inn, and then lost it all when the stock market crashed in 1929. The previous owner, a farmer, got the property back and became an innkeeper. Carol and Michael have been running the inn since, I believe, 1971 (though only living on-site for perhaps a decade).
I have no way of really telling which parts of the main house are original 1806 and which are more recent. If I understand Carol correctly the footprint of the main house has not changed since it was first built. The interior design has changed though with the removal of walls, the addition of some room dormers and installation of skylights. It is hard to believe that the rooms we are in (or the kitchen) have not been changed since 1971. They just look so good. Everything looks wonderful from the richly appointed bedrooms, large kitchen, substantial dining rooms, lovely wide cut wood floors, and so on. Out on the grounds there is a swimming pool, tennis courts, and other buildings that are used for storage and as halls for large functions like weddings. The amount of tender loving care that must go into keeping everything looking good boggles my mind and I am sure I don't even begin to grasp what is required (Mom and Dad probably have a better idea).
We had a nice dinner served by Carol with the help of Ingrid and we learned a little more about what was around us. It's too bad there is no view right now. The skies clear and mist up but the clouds are not going to depart anytime soon even though it is (not now) raining. If we could see the mountains they would include Mt. Marcy, Herrick (?), and Gren, (think those are right). Carol helped us pick a hike for tomorrow. If the weather is reasonably co-operative we will hike a portion of the Long Trail (and Appalachian Trail) between Lottery road and VT 140. If the weather doesn't co-operate, that is it is pouring rain before we even start hiking and shows no signs of letting up, we will probably do some touring of local towns like Rutland and Bennington.
This area, in some ways, feels more remote than Front Royal. Even though the Front Royal house is perhaps nearly 10 miles away from the town of Front Royal and this inn is actually closer to the small town of Shrewsbury (about 2,500 v. the 10-15,000 of Front Royal) it feels more remote. Some of that can be attributed to the gravel road we drove down to get here, some the nature of the properties along the road, and no doubt some to the local geography of very green rolling hills. It is an area that I could not live in since I do not drive. But, it is an area that I am sure is also full of charm and beauty.