Vermont Green Mountains Easter Celebration
For Easter in Vermont, upon the first full moon of the March equinox, we celebrate a magical tradition: Mountain Sunrise Service. At dawn on Easter Sunday, lines of climbing congregants wind their way up through the darkness of the early day. From dusky purple summits, they gaze east in anticipation and reflection. Many of our ski areas support these weary pilgrims with free chairlift rides to the peaks. Afterward, some ride the lifts back down while others descend on skis. At nearby Killington, Okemo, and Mount Snow, hidden Easter eggs dot snowy trails with spots of color. Farther north, just south of Canada, Jay Peak opens its impressive aerial tram at 4:45 AM to ferry carloads of celebrants to the top. In the dim shadows of that early hour, riders can peer down from the gondola and see white lights moving up the trail like a string of pearls. These are the headlamps of local mountaineers, hiking single file up the mountain to greet the sunrise.
No matter how you get there, the view is always worth the climb. In the icy pre-dawn hours, the stars are crystal clear in the frigid mountain air. You can see to the next mountain range, and the range beyond, and to the smoky ridges that run dark in the distance. Scattered in the valleys below are softly lit homes, interspersed with luminous larger villages. Far to the east, the sky begins to glow, a faint translucent green at first, then deep coral, and then pale orange. Suddenly the sun is up, flooding the valley with rose-colored rays. Frosted white trees glimmer in the golden light, the sky opens to greet the day, and the world is renewed with promise.
The Orton Family,
Gardner, Cabot, Eliot, Lyman
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