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Vermont State Parks

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USA Parks
Central Region
Okemo State Forest
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Ludlow, Vermont   05149
(lat:43.3785 lon:-72.7511) map location
Okemo State Forest is a picturesque and serene natural haven encompassing beautiful landscapes and diverse ecosystems. With its vast expanse of lush greenery, rolling hills, winding streams, and dense forests, this forest offers a tranquil retreat for nature enthusiasts and outdoor adventurers alike. The area is home to an abundance of flora and fauna, providing ample opportunities for hiking, camping, wildlife observation, and peaceful reflection. Visitors can immerse themselves in the breathtaking scenery, soak in the serenity of the surroundings, and revel in the wonders of nature as they explore the Okemo State Forest.
History of the Area
The area where Okemo State Forest is situated was initially part of a large tract of wilderness owned by the Crown of Great Britain. After the American Revolution in 1776, the ultimate ownership of the land was transferred to the State of Vermont. In the early 1800s, timber harvesting became a significant economic activity in the region, leading to the development of several logging communities.

During this time, Vermont experienced a logging boom, with many lumber mills popping up across the state. The forests were heavily exploited for their timber resources, and vast areas were cleared for agricultural purposes. However, by the late 19th century, the logging industry began to decline due to resource exhaustion and increased environmental awareness.

In the early 20th century, concerned citizens recognized the need to conserve Vermont's natural areas and protect its forests. The creation of state forests became a priority to ensure the preservation and sustainable management of woodland resources. The State Forest System was established to protect watersheds, promote recreation opportunities, and provide a sustainable timber supply.

Okemo State Forest was officially established in 1928, covering an area of approximately 3,325 acres. It was named after the nearby Okemo Mountain, which is a prominent feature in the region. The forest has been actively managed under sustainable forestry practices, aiming to balance ecological preservation, recreational use, and timber production.
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1. Healdville Trail: A 6-mile round trip trail, it leads to the top of Okemo Mountain with scenic views and a fire tower.

2. South Hill Loop: This is an easy 3-mile loop perfect for beginners or families; offers beautiful forest scenery.

3. Catamount Cross Country Ski Trails: These trails span approximately 12 miles within the state forest, ideal for cross-country skiing in winter months.

4. Vista Hiking Trail: An intermediate level hike that stretches about two miles long offering panoramic vistas from atop Okemo mountain's summit lodge area.

5. Black River Overlook Spur Trail - Short half mile spur off South Hill Loop leading to overlooks on Black River

6. Okemo Ridge Runners Snowmobile Club Trails - Extensive network used primarily by snowmobilers but also open to hikers during non-winter seasons.

7. Bloodroot Mountain Bike Area- Network of bike-specific singletrack routes which can be utilized as hiking paths when not occupied by bikers

8. Sunburst Six Adventure Zone Pathway- Paved path accessible via Sunburst chairlift at resort base station providing access into more remote areas

9. Coleman Brook Nature Walk- Easy one mile walk along Coleman brook near Jackson Gore Inn suitable even for young children

10. Sachem Peak Access Road - Steep three-quarter mile road up Sachem peak often used as training route due its challenging incline

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Area Campgrounds
Horseshoe Acres Campground
Weston-Andover Road
Andover, VT
Crown Point Camping Area
131 Bishop Camp Road
Perkinsville, VT
Area Cabins and Lodges
Okemo Mountain Resort: Ski Shop
77 Okemo Ridge Rd
Ludlow, VT
(802) 228-4041
River Tavern The
75 Billings Rd
Plymouth, VT
(802) 672-3811
Hawk Inn & Mountain Resort
75 Billings Rd
Plymouth, VT
(802) 672-3811
Crown Cuts at Hawk Resort
75 Billings Rd
Plymouth, VT
(802) 672-3811
Castle Hill Resort Model Unit
152 Castle Hill Dr
Cavendish, VT
(802) 226-8129

1. Start on I:91 N towards White River Junction.
2. Take exit 6 for VT:103 toward Chester/Rutland.
3. Turn right onto VT:103 S (signs for Rutland).
4. Continue straight to stay on VT:103 S, passing by Jiffy Mart of Chester (on the left in 12 miles).
5. After about half an hour, turn right onto Depot St/Healdville Rd.
6. Drive along Healdville Road until you reach Okemo State Forest.

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Vermont State Parks