The first fifty miles are never the easiest. Day one of EMS’s Vermont bikepacking expedition is complete after a delicious dinner and a couple brews at the von Trapp Brewery and Bierhall. Today by the numbers:

  • 2 Breweries
  • 50.2 miles
  • 4,035 feet of gain
  • 6 Little Free Libraries
  • 0 Breakdowns (Mental or Mechanical)
At the incredible von Trapp Brewery.

As a team we decided we would each share our “rose, bud, thorn” for each day of the trip. Those represent a highlight from the day, something we’re looking forward to, and a lowlight. I’ll go first:


Rose: “We passed six different Little Free Libraries today—something I can’t ever pass up. What gems.”

Bud: “Is it too early to look forward to food? Breakfast tomorrow somewhere in Stowe.”

Thorn: “My butt callouses have yet to fully develop.”


Rose: “I think the mood of the group throughout the entire day was great, even on the hills.”

Bud: “I’m excited to sleep without the raccoons that we had harassing us last night in Burlington.”

Thorn: “My bike shorts…Just that they exist and I have to wear them every day.”

Credit: Lauren Danilek


Rose: “We loved getting to learn about the brewing process with Sam at the Von Trapp Bierhall.”

Bud: “Getting to know this group better.”

Thorn: “The hills getting to the aforementioned brewery.”


Rose: “The beautiful, bucolic Vermont gravel roads.”

Bud: “The bud is hard because I literally don’t know what I’m doing tomorrow.”

Thorn: “I was disappointed at how aggressively I sweat on the hills.”


Tomorrow is a big one. Stay tuned.

Credit: Lauren Danilek