Seniors Discover Quechee Gorge


When I first saw this name as a site selected by CNN as a great place to visit, this senior just had to check it out. I learned that Quechee Gorge (pronunciation: kwee chee)  is known as Vermont’s Little Grand Canyon and is located in Hartford, Vermont.

The length of the Gorge is 1.4 miles.  As I live in Arizona, “little” makes more sense, especially if you have visited our “Grand Canyon” that is a mile deep and 277 miles long. Nevertheless, the Quechee Gorge is impressive.

Quechee was settled in the 1760s when homesteaders were deeded acres for the erection of mills along the Ottauquechee River. The mills became the heartbeat of this community, providing everything from lumber to cider for the settlers. To accommodate growing traffic, a bridge was built over the Ottauquechee River at the current site of the Quechee covered bridge.

 Seniors Find A Popular Natural Wonder


Quechee is the home of the Quechee Lakes planned community, with two eighteen hole golf courses. The town is host to a popular hot air balloon festival, Scottish Games, Quechee Polo Grounds, and the Simon Pearce glass blowing and pottery facility, keeping things hopping all year long. Senior visitors can start off at the modern Quechee Gorge Visitors Center in White River Junction.

Today the Gorge is one of New England’s most popular natural wonders. Over 200,000 yearly visitors enjoy the Vermont Institute of Natural Science, fishing and canoeing the river, hiking trails, cross country skiing, and snowshoeing.

Established in 1985, and located in the heart of the Quechee Gorge, Quechee Gorge Village has evolved into one of the best shopping attractions in the state of Vermont. Seniors can visit the Cabot Quechee Store, Danforth Pewter, Vermont Toy & Train Museum, Vermont Spirits, The Quechee Diner and Snow Farm Gallery.

Covered Bridge, Cool Gorge and Hot Air Balloons


The town itself with about 700 inhabitants has lots of shops, a waterfall, a covered bridge, and one very cool gorge easily viewed from a bridge that crosses the main road into town. If you drive a little farther out of town, you will see Farmer’s Diner, a throwback to an earlier age with a old red barn and one of those old original dining cars that looks like it fell off a train. The antique mall features more than 450 booths.

Every Father’s Day Weekend, folks come from all over to enjoy the annual Quechee Hot Air Ballon Festival. For those of you who enjoy hiking, an easy trail takes you along Quechee Gorge, up to waterfalls and Dewey’s Mill Pond.

Further exploration along the Ottauquechee River (pronounced AWT-ah-KWEE-chee) leads you through green meadows and colorful Vermont  woods. Now you know all about Quechee, so plan to stop by and see that famous gorge for yourself and maybe dine at Farmer’s Diner.  jeb

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