In the middle of the night the wind picked up, we heard rain on the old transom windows and the temperature dropped over twenty degrees. Phew. Linda sent us off in the morning with a fabulous breakfast of Eggs Benedict her way–two poached eggs over maple bacon on a croissant and covered in hollandaise sauce. Definitely one of the best on the road breakfasts I’ve had. With a three-hour drive ahead of us, we plugged in my I-phone and listened to a mix of upbeat rock and roll music—maybe a little reluctant to leave the vibe at Made Inn Vermont.
This was one of the most beautiful driving days, though the hills of Vermont and into the White Mountains in New Hampshire. With the increased altitude, we saw more color in the hills—splashes of gold and red at every turn. On one two-lane highway, the road work slowed us down long enough to see and stop at a maple syrup farm.
The proprietor at Goodrich Maple Farm was offering free tours but in the Fall there’s not much going on here. Their busy time is in the Spring when things start to thaw and the trees are tapped for their tasty sap. We learned that this part of Vermont has a fifth season called “Mudding” between Winter and Spring when the snow melts and the dirt roads turn to slippery mud on top of the frost still thick underground. He told us that there are more school days cancelled in Mudding than in Winter when the snow falls relentlessly. You can clear the snow from the streets but there’s nothing you can do about that slippery mud but wait. Proudly, he said, this place has been known to record the coldest temperatures in the country—as low as forty below zero. Brrrr.
After tasting three different strengths of syrup, we left with the amber style, not too light and not too dark. Just right. We bought some maple sugar for toast back at home and also some maple candies that we ate right then. Biting into them made my teeth hurt.
Down the road and just a few miles before the renowned Cancamangus Highway, we stopped at a local cafe where we ordered their homemade cockaleekie soup (chicken with local vegetables-who knew?) and half a chicken salad on freshly baked bread. Yum.
The highway was definitely beautiful but I’m not sure it was any more spectacular than the rest of our route through Vermont and into New Hampshire. We arrived in North Conway, New Hampshire with enough time to take a quick rest before exploring the town in search of another great New England dinner.