Guv to bike 93 miles in one day to celebrate completion of Rail Trail – wanna come along?

By Guy Page

Governor Phil Scott will bike the entire 93-mile Lamoille Valley Rail Trail from 7 AM to 8 PM on July 15, and you’re invited to bike along.

So is the rest of the State of Vermont, including the Vermont press corps.

In a published statement, Governor Scott and Senator Bernie Sanders invite the media and the public to participate in a celebration of the Lamoille Valley Rail Trail (LVRT) – recently completed and now the longest rail trail in New England. The Governor will bike the entire 93-mile trail from Swanton to St. Johnsbury and make brief water stops along the trail with Senator Sanders, who secured the original federal grant to help establish the LVRT back in 2005. 

The Lamoille Valley Rail Trail (LVRT) is a year-round trail across northern Vermont that stretches 93 miles between St. Johnsbury and Swanton, says Traillink.com. The trail passes through the spine of Vermont’s Green Mountain Range, from the Connecticut River to Lake Champlain. It covers five counties and 18 towns, one of the longest rail-trails in New England. The LVRT’s grade never exceeds 3 percent, making it accessible to a variety of trail users and abilities.

The trail follows the former route of the Lamoille Valley Railroad, which once served as a vital east–west transportation corridor from 1877 until its closing in 1994. The railroad was known as the covered bridge line and was a leaf peeper train for scenic tourism. The Vermont Association of Snow Travelers has supported the project for many years and helps to maintain the trail.

The media and the public are invited to join in all or part of the Governor’s ride and any of the planned brief stops.  

When: Saturday, July 15, 2023 – 7:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.

7:00 a.m. – 7:45 a.m.: Swanton (location TBD), Kick Off Event (with brief remarks)

7:45 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.: Ride from Swanton to Morrisville (schedule of brief stops to come)

1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.: Morrisville (location TBD), Main Event and Celebration

2:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.: Ride from Morrisville to St. Johnsbury (schedule of brief stops to come)

7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. St. Johnsbury (location TBD), End of Ride Celebration

Lest anyone think our 64-year-old governor isn’t up to the grueling task, remember that he’s occasionally seen racing through the streets of Montpelier on his bicycle. And climbing steep Irish Hill near his Berlin home. And that he used to be a champion stock car racer. And a fitness instructor at a Berlin gym. 

According to a 2016 article in VT Sports, Scott began bike riding to keep fit for stock car racing and snowmobiling:

“Shocked by how difficult his first bike ride of 7 or 8 miles was (he says his legs cramped up and then seized), he dedicated himself to training and now routinely rides 20 to 25 miles a day, along with several century rides throughout the year, logging over 4,500 miles in 2015. An early riser, Scott says he routinely gets up at 4:30 a.m., goes to his exercise room, turns on the television news and pedals a stationary bike for half an hour or more, and then tries to get in a ride outside later in the day. ‘I’ve felt that by staying in shape, I might have had a little bit of an edge over some of my competitors, which has led to the success I’ve enjoyed.’”

Senator Sanders’ July 15 bicycling plans are a little less clear.

Includes content from Gov. Phil Scott press release

Categories: Outdoors

7 replies »

  1. I think it’s great he’s active and took action after realizing biking 7 or 8 miles was challenging! I imagine feeling good helped him to see through the destruction in our state …hence the vetoes.

  2. Meanwhile, 93 miles, and 31.5 million dollars later, we are still sharing our roads with in an unsafe, and now unnecessary manner.

  3. Must be the innoculation he received was from the “special” batch. Lost count of the fit and healthy athletes of all ages that died suddenly – but not this one apparently.