- Associated Press - Saturday, April 22, 2017

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) - The Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation is reminding the state’s hikers that it’s mud season and many hiking trails are closed, especially those at higher elevations.

Melting snow and rain can keep trails wet, muddy, and prone to erosion. The state says hikers walking on saturated soils or on the sides of trails can damage surrounding vegetation, widen trails, and inhibit natural drainage.

The state’s Jessica Savage says it can take hours for a volunteer or trail crew to fix damage caused in minutes by hiking on muddy trails.

Dave Hardy, director of the trail programs for the Green Mountain Club, which manages the Long Trail and other hiking trails in Vermont, asks that hikers give the trails time to dry out for the summer hiking season.

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