NEK Mountain Challenge

/NEK Mountain Challenge
NEK Mountain Challenge 2017-08-02T15:12:45+00:00

The Northeast Kingdom Mountain Challenge is a program established in 1999 by NorthWoods Stewardship Center and the Northeast Kingdom Travel and Tourism Association (NEKTTA) in an effort to build interest in local mountains, trails and communities. NorthWoods has recently revived the Northeast Kingdom Mountain Challenge in an effort to rekindle local interest and promote low-impact recreation throughout the region.

Through the original Mountain Challenge program, hikers visited local peaks, documented their travels, and shared stories and photos at a ‘Peakbagger Potluck’ held at the end of the season. In 1999, the list included 12 peaks. In 2000, it was expanded to 20 mountains and included MOST of the publicly accessible mountains with trails in northeastern Vermont. Hikers who visited all of the peaks received an official Northeast Kingdom Mountain Challenge patch and certificate.

Like the many other “peakbagging” groups in the Northeast —the White Mountain 4,000 footers, the Adirondack 46ers, the Long Trail End-to-Enders, and the New England 100-highest, to name a few— the Northeast Kingdom Mountain Challenge captures the excitement of setting goals and offers the opportunity to explore new areas in this region. Guy and Laura Waterman write extensively on the subject of peakbagging in their book Backwoods Ethics, noting that hikers “go to the mountains for many different reasons.” It is with this in mind, that NorthWoods encourages hikers to not only challenge themselves through recreation but also to explore new areas and, through exploration, learn more about the nature of northern Vermont. Below is a modified checklist of peaks, originally included in the 1999 and 2000 Northeast Kingdom Mountain Challenge program.

PLEASE NOTE: A number of these peaks are located on private property with trails provided through the discretion and generosity of private landowners. Please respect private lands so that others may continue to have access. Trail conditions on all peaks may vary widely and not all trails are described in this guidebook. Comments or changes in trail conditions can be sent to the address below or by email to

Looking for a serious Challenge?

Want to strike 5 mountains off your list?

Join us 10.14.17 for the Westmore Mountain Challenge.

1 day. 5 mountains. 26 miles.

Learn More

Northeast Kingdom Mountain Challenge Checklist:

□ Averill Mountain, Averill

□ Bald Mountain, Westmore

□ Belvidere Mountain, Lowell

□ Big Deer Mountain, Peacham

□ Bluff Mountain, Island Pond

□ Brousseau Mountain, Norton

□ Burke Mountain, Burke

□ Gore Mountain, Avery’s Gore

□ Haystack Mountain, Westmore

□ Jay Peak, Westfield

□ Middle Mountain, Avery’s Gore and Warren’s Gore

□ Monadnock Mountain, Lemington

□ Moose Mountain, Sutton

□ Mount Hor, Westmore

□ Mount Pisgah, Westmore

□ Owl’s Head, Peacham

□ Spruce Mountain, Plainfield

□ Stannard Lookout, Stannard

□ Wheeler Mountain, Sutton

Have you completed them all? Celebrate! Get the Mountain Challenge Patch!

To qualify for an official Mountain Challenge patch, please send or deliver a completed checklist with photographic or journal evidence of each peak climbed PLUS A $10.00 HANDLING FEE to:

NorthWoods Stewardship Center
Attn: NEK Mountain Challenge
PO Box 220
Ten Mile Square Road
East Charleston, VT 05833

To the extent possible, please include the hike date, trail, number of hikers, photos and any other helpful notes to help document your hikes. Please provide a phone number where you can be reached and a self-addressed, stamped envelope so we can return your packet and send you your patch.