BRATTLEBORO -- The annual Strolling of the Heifers event is all about fun and education.
The same could be said for Sunday’s hike up Round Mountain, which is held in conjunction with -- and as an alternative to -- the Stroll’s Tour de Heifer bike rides.
Forester George Weir, who guides the event, said he looks forward to an opportunity to walk and talk on a morning hike.
"It’s a really wonderful hike, and it’s close to town. It’s got really nice views," Weir said.
He added that, on the way up the hill, "you can see a lot of variation in plant communities in a very small area -- that’s what neat about it. There’s a lot to learn."
The hike, like the Tour de Heifer, begins at Lilac Ridge Farm, which is at 264 Ames Hill Road in Brattleboro. The walk starts at 10:30 a.m. and proceeds to the top of Round Mountain, then back to the farm via Ames Hill Road and Abbot Road.
In spite of a climb of about 750 vertical feet, "it’s not strenuous," Weir said. "We stop along the way. People ask questions, and we have conversations."
Organizers said the climb "is rewarded by scenic vistas to the east, across the town of Brattleboro to Mt. Wantastiquet and Mt. Monadnock."
The hike has been happening for several years. Weir, who is trained in forest ecology and works in all aspects of forest management, said he sees the event as "half exercise and half education.
Those who want to participate in the hike can preregister at www.strollingoftheheifers.com/tour. Event coordinator Hanna Thurber said there is a $15 per person fee that includes lunch.
"You can go online to register anytime up until 5 p.m. Saturday, or you can just show up Sunday morning," Thurber said.
Registration on the day of the event is at Lilac Ridge Farm. The buffet-style lunch is scheduled from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the farm.
Mike Faher can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 802-254-2311, ext. 275.