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Vermont’s Mad River Valley Is Quaint, Connected

The four small towns of Waitsfield, Moretown, Fayston and Warren have access to excellent snow skiing, a celebrated arts scene and high-speed fiber internet.

By Livability on April 28, 2023

Autumn In Vermont

Vermont’s Mad River Valley is one of New England’s most iconic and stunningly beautiful regions. Best-known for its phenomenal skiing and verdant pastoral countryside, the Mad River Valley is home to the four small towns of Waitsfield, Moretown, Fayston and Warren. 

The Mad River Valley is bounded by the Green Mountains and Northfield Ridge, which provide year-round recreational opportunities. The valley is conveniently located in the heart of Vermont, about 30 minutes west of Montpelier, Vermont’s capital, and an hour southeast of Burlington, the state’s largest city.

Locals and travelers alike can traverse the valley via the scenic Mad River Byway, a collection of roads that link the towns. The Scenic Route 100 is the highlight of this 36-mile byway, offering easy connections between the towns and spectacular views along the way. Route 100 also links to Interstate 89, putting the city of Burlington within about an hour’s drive.

Mad River Valley residents have access to WCVT’s fiber-optic internet network to connect them with work, colleagues, family and friends. Serving the community since 1904, WCVT has evolved with technology to deliver some of the fastest and most reliable internet anywhere in the world — and at fiber’s intense speeds of up to 1 gigabit per second!

The Mad River Valley at a Glance

The pristine Mad River, a tributary to the Winooski River, which flows into Lake Champlain, is at the heart of the valley that bears its name. Enveloped by the Green Mountains and deep forests, the Mad River Valley has long attracted nature-lovers and those seeking a quieter New England lifestyle. 

The bucolic villages of the Mad River Valley feature boutiques to browse, acclaimed dining and phenomenal vistas like Fayston’s Burnt Rock Mountain. Portions of Waitsfield and Moretown are on the National Register of Historic Places for their landmarks. And the valley even caught the attention of Season 2022 of HGTV’s “Dream Home,” which was set in Warren!

The Mad River Valley is also noted for its celebrated arts scene. Every year, the Vermont Festival of the Arts draws thousands from allover New England and elsewhere. Named one of New England’s best festivals by Yankee Magazine and a Vermont Top-10 Summer Event by the Vermont Chamber of Commerce, the Festival of the Arts just cannot be missed! 

A Skiing and Outdoor Recreation Paradise

Vermont is rightly famous around the world for its outstanding ski resorts and the splendor of its mountains, rivers, lakes and forests. Indeed, most of the state is a veritable playground! And the fall colors of New England’s leafy trees are a site that few will ever forget. 

The Mad River Valley showcases some of the best skiing and outdoor recreation in Vermont — and all of New England. Indeed, two of New England’s most renowned ski resorts and areas are found here: Sugarbush and Mad River Glen. 

Sugarbush Resort in Warren is one of New England’s largest ski resorts. Its 4,000 acres contain more than 50 miles of trails and 16 ski lifts to keep skiers moving. Two of its most infamous slopes, Lincoln Peak and Mt. Ellen, are some of the most challenging you’ll find anywhere.

Locals also enjoy Mad River Glen, America’s only ski area on the National Register of Historic Places. Unlike most other ski areas, Mad River Glen is a co-op, with individual skiers “owning” shares in it. It’s also recognized for having diverse slopes and trails — and being among the most demanding ski areas in the country.

Fayston, Moretown, Waitsfield and Warren, Vermont

The four towns of Fayston, Moretown, Waitsfield and Warren are the core communities of the Mad River Valley. Each has fewer than 2,000 residents and each is quite distinct — though together, they’ve forged a common spirit that cherishes the lifestyle of rural central Vermont and the area’s stunning natural heritage.

Warren is the largest of the four towns, and has several outstanding restaurants and eateries, including one the valley’s finest and most romantic, the Pitcher Inn. Residents enjoy Warren Falls, a lovely waterfall with a strikingly clear swimming hole that is best sampled in summer. Warren also has an old-fashioned covered bridge dating to the late 1870s, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

With a population of around 1,800 people, Waitsfield is the second largest town. Waitsfield is also home to Mad River Valley Arts, one of the valley’s creative focal points. Focusing primarily on contemporary arts, Mad River Valley Arts fosters education and a genuine community atmosphere around the arts, hosting many programs, workshops and local and visiting artists’ talks. 

Two festivals are also held in Waitsfield annually: the Vermont Festival of the Arts in August, and the Mad River Valley Craft Fair held around Labor Day Weekend. Showing off local and regional arts and crafts, these two festivals revel in the often-quirky vibe of this corner of New England.

Located off of Route 17, Fayston easily connects to Scenic Route 100, or northwest toward I-89. Fayston is closest to the Mad River Glen ski area and all of its many recreational opportunities.

Moretown, the northern-most of these four towns, has organic farms to explore, as well as several nearby creeks and streams. 

Fiber Internet Keeps Mad River Valley Connected

WCVT provides the towns of the Mad River Valley with high-speed fiber internet. Using advanced fiber-optic technology, WCVT delivers internet through light, at speeds up to 20 times faster than ordinary copper-based cable. So you can be confident that your internet will be more reliable and that multiple users can stream TV and movies simultaneously on multiple devices — and without the pixilation, buffering and lag that frustrate so many users of inferior internet!

Businesses and remote workers can also count on WCVT’s fiber. Because of fiber’s greater bandwidth capacity over cable and other kinds of internet, video conference calls are clearer and have far fewer interruptions. You can also more easily upload and download large files to keep business running efficiently. And because WCVT offers speeds of up to 1-Gig per second, your fiber internet will be as fast as any other city’s!

Thanks to WCVT’s fiber internet, residents of the Mad River Valley get to enjoy fast and reliable internet service, as well as some of the most gorgeous scenery New England has to offer. From its thriving art and restaurant scene, to some of best skiing on earth, to superb natural beauty, the towns of the Mad River Valley may be just what you’ve been looking for. 

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