1 minute reading time (280 words)

Whose Woods Are These?

VT-Backcountry Vermont backcountry skiing.

On the third weekend of January, somewhere in the backcountry glades of Braintree Mountain Forest, shots rang out. It wasn’t a hunter after coyotes but a life-long Vermonter protecting his property from a backcountry skier. Though the land was posted with ‘No Trespassing’ signs, skiers sometimes ignore them as they pick fresh lines down from a trail near the home. When this skier, also a life-long Vermonter, crossed over onto the private land, the landowner had enough and fired a few warning shots.

On the third weekend of January, somewhere in the backcountry glades of Braintree Mountain Forest, shots rang out. It wasn’t a hunter after coyotes but a life-long Vermonter protecting his property from a backcountry skier. Though the land was posted with ‘No Trespassing’ signs, skiers sometimes ignore them as they pick fresh lines down from a trail near the home. When this skier, also a life-long Vermonter, crossed over onto the private land, the landowner had enough and fired a few warning shots.


No one was hurt but the skier filed a police report. “After, the skier was sincerely apologetic about it all,” said Braintree resident Zac Freeman, who along with Angus McCusker founded the Rochester/Randolph Sport Trails Alliance (RASTA), the group that has developed the backcountry trails in Braintree and at Brandon Gap, near Rochester.

RASTA promptly closed the area and began working with the abutting landowner to reroute the trail. “I’ve heard his frustrations before – and hey, I don’t think anyone would want a steady stream of skiers going by their kitchen window,” said Freeman. “But a big stewardship responsibility rests on the shoulders of each trail user.”

 Read the full story at VTSkiandRide.com

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