TOWNSHEND STATE FOREST
TOWNSHEND STATE FOREST
Townshend, Vermont 05353
Townshend State Park is located at the foot of Bald Mountain on a bend of the West River. There is a view of Rattlesnake Mountain to the north from the ranger's quarters.
A hiking trail leads to the summit of the mountain, a vertical climb of 1,100 feet from the campground. Geological features along the trail include waterfalls, chutes, and pools. From the top of the mountain, vistas provide views to the north, south, and east.
1. Early Settlement: The Townshend area was first settled in the early 18th century by European colonists. The land that now constitutes the state forest was part of the colonial grants given to the early settlers.
2. Logging Era: In the 19th and early 20th centuries, the Townshend area saw significant lumbering activities. The old-growth forests were heavily logged, providing timber for regional construction and other industries.
3. Soil Conservation Efforts: In the 1930s, during the Great Depression, the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), a public work relief program, was actively involved in reforestation and soil conservation projects across the United States. The CCC played a key role in the development of the Townshend State Forest.
4. Acquisition of Land: The State of Vermont gradually acquired the forested lands around Townshend, including those previously owned by private timber companies. The acquisition process took place over several decades, starting in the mid-20th century.
5. Vermont State Forest Establishment: Townshend State Forest was officially established as a state forest in 1968. It was recognized for its ecological importance and recreational value, offering opportunities for hiking, camping, fishing, and wildlife observation.
6. Management and Recreation: The Vermont Department of Forests, Parks, and Recreation manages the Townshend State Forest. Over the years, they have implemented sustainable forestry practices to maintain healthy forest ecosystems and ensure recreational opportunities for visitors.
1. Townshend State Park offers 30 tent/RV sites and lean:to shelters for camping.
2. Primitive group camping is available at the park.
3. The campground features flush toilets, hot showers, and a dump station for RVs.
4. Pets are allowed in certain areas of the campgrounds but must be leashed at all times.