It was too warm last night to put the rain fly on our tent at the Thompson Hill Campground. When we wake up, the morning dew blankets our tent body and has snuck through the mesh and saturated our sleeping bags. My shoes outside the tent are shiny, like they’d been sweating from a workout. Everything is damp.
Damp and pleasant: that’s how we’d describe Vermont. There’s not much dramatic scenery here. No soaring mountains. No grand canyons. It’s just pleasant little farms with pleasant weather-worn barns, pleasant shallow ponds and pleasant covered bridges.
Speaking of the covered bridges, we pass a series of them on our way from Chelsea to South Royalton. In fact, we choose to ride this rather unpleasant highway in order to check out the bridges. It turns out they were all built around the turn of the 20th Century.
We guess that they built the timber bridges with roofs to prevent the heavy winter snow from collapsing them. Although they look rather plain and delicate from the outside, they’re masterfully constructed on the inside.
After touring three bridges, we arrive in the surprisingly busy town of South Royalton. We pass a law school (who knew!?!) and roll over to the pleasant park adjacent the strip of buildings that makes up downtown. There’s a deli, a co-op market, a brewery and cafe, and a few restaurants. Compared to the little villages we’ve been passing through the past few days, this town is thriving.
We settle into a picnic table in the shade and use another table in the sun to dry our damp sleeping bags and tent. It’s another hot day, so it all dries super fast. The restaurants don’t open until dinner time, so we grab sandwiches and french fries from the deli and have a pleasant lunch in the park.
Our plan tonight is to stay at a b&b outside of town. With the hot weather forecasted to get even hotter tomorrow, we decide to stay at the b&b a second night. We can use the rest day to hide from the sun and to soothe our chaffed behinds.